Age of Sigmar/Tactics/Death/Legions of Nagash
Grand Alliance Death
Legions of Nagash
The first Necromancer and arguably the second
Legions of Nagash changes up the way death plays by removing magical summoning and banner regen for skellies and replaces them with hero based regen and grave sites. They also add several new allegiance abilities.
- 1 Why play Legions of Nagash?
- 2 Allegiance Abilities
- 3 Units
- 4 Allies
Why play Legions of Nagash?
- SPOOKY SCARY SKELETONS! Do you want to see hordes and hordes of skeletons endlessly marching out of the grave and pinging whatever it looks at with literally 400 attacks? Well, this is what you're going to want to play. You also get zombies, ghosts and all sorts of other creepy goodness!
- A solid range of plastic miniatures and plenty of possibilities for conversion (looking at you triumvirate of Ynnead/vampires!)
- More bodies with better durability for the cost than most and the ability to bring models back, when the stars line up you can end the game with net zero lost models.
- You’ve got 4 legions to choose from as well as Death and Soulblight factions so you can test out a lot of stuff and play with lots of variations on a theme.
- Did you play Orks in 40k? Would you like to throw a bucketful of dice? Well, if you get a unit of 40 skeletons into combat and buff them properly, they’ll be getting 5 attacks each with the possibility of piling in and attacking twice with Vanhels Danse Macabre. In a perfect storm that’s 400 attacks at 4+/4+!!!!
- Is a summonable unit dead? Did you just kill an enemy unit within 6" of a gravesite? Start rolling your d6 because on a 4+, congrats! You get that unit back for free. You can also get them back with the use of a Command Ability given to your general.
- Battleshock is unlikely given that everybody's Bravery 10.
- Vampire fullplate knights with lances are fuckin metal
- At least vanilla skellies are stupidly easy to paint, and yet again, you don't need to be a Golden Demon winner to paint the armor of more complex models.
- Zero. Ranged. Units (traditionally speaking). Not a single usable one. There are handful of short-range shooting attacks. Can’t even ally in Tomb Kings archers!
- Ghosts, Terrorgheists and Zombie Dragons are all there is here... though Nagash can shoot death lasers from his eyes. Prince Vhordrai is just a named VLoZD, just with a ranged ability with an 8" range, rather than a 9" range and a less assassin-y spell. That said, the Terrorghiest still has the best range out of all the variations in this box.
- Doesn't support Tomb Kings, the Flesh Eater Courts or the Mourngul.
- One thing to note about our unconventional ranged weapons is that they all contest a leadership score; Usually 2d6 vs their bravery. With good positioning of our banners and the Overwhelming Dread spell our limited shooting can deal a fair amount of mortal wounds. Our shooting is extremely short ranged but they can put on some serious damage.
- Rend -1 is effectively rend -2 for your skeletons, grave guards, black knights and blood knights. It hurts... a lot.
- Quite a few slow units, including the all-important necromancer
- How many skeletons do you want to paint? Whatever that number is you’ll need to paint more than that.
- The removal of magical summoning also means you can't bring in new units, only bring back the ones that are completely destroyed if they have the summonable keyword, and you need to use a command ability to do so. Furthermore, if you are playing Matched Play if your general dies that means no resurrecting dead summonable units (except for Legion of Sacrament).
A bit of a long one as there are 4 allegiances for the Legions of Nagash. They are themed around Nagash and his three top generals. There are also two other allegiances; one for Soulblight and one for generic Death.
- If a warscroll battalion has an allegiance, it can be taken in an army if it has the same allegiance, even if some of the units are from a different faction, but these units do not benefit from the armies allegiance abilities unless they have the appropriate keyword. So you can use Court of Nuhlamia in a Grand Host army, but models in the battalion will not be affected by deathless minions or legions innumerable, as you army can only have 1 allegiance at a time.
Grand Host and the 4 Legions
- These abilities are common to the Grand Host of Nagash, Legion of Sacrament, Legion of Blood, Legion of Night, and Legion of Grief.
- Gravesite: After sides are chosen, place two gravesites wholly within your territory and two anywhere else on the board. Importantly these are only points on the battlefield, whatever you choose to represent them does not exist for the purpose of line of sight or cover or scenery. They have the following abilities:
- The Unquiet Dead: You can place SUMMONABLE units into the “grave” instead of deploying them. At the end of the movement phase, each DEATH HERO within 9" of the gravesite can pull one unit out of the grave. They have to be set up fully within 9” of the gravesite and outside of 9” of any enemy models (any model that can't be placed in this way is slain). This is a nice way of getting around skeletons horribly low movement speed if you can, they are vulnerable to area denial though so be careful.
- Invigorating Aura: Gravesites can heal a SUMMONABLE unit within 9” by d3 wounds OR bring back models with a wound total equal to a D3. Note, you cannot bring back models with missing wounds, nor can you both heal a model and bring back models with the same roll, so to bring back a spirit host you’d have to roll a 5 or 6, if you had a unit of black knights with models slain and a model missing a wound and you rolled a 5 or 6 you could only heal the remaining wound, not heal and bring back a model despite having rolled high enough to do so.
- MAGIC: All DEATH WIZARDS know an additional spell from one of the Lores of the Dead. If Nagash is included he knows three additional spells, which is good since he can cast 8 at full health! (Legion of Grief does not get this).
- Deathless Minions: Roll a D6 when wounds are allocated so long as the unit they're being allocated to is within 6" of a hero, ignoring wounds or mortal wounds on a roll of 6+.
This is not going to help all that often butThis is a 16% increase in your models' effective health. Think of it like adding 6-7 skeletons to each 40 model unit. It can actually be better than that due to all the healing/resurrection LoN can do too.
- Endless Legions: A command ability and the final bonus, your general automatically gains this as an additional command trait. In case you're running low on units, you can pull more out of your
assgravesites. Pay a command point and place a destroyed unit wholly within 9” of the gravesite and 9” away from any enemy units (any models that can't be placed are slain). On its own this ability is really powerful and a great reason to play death. Store up a few command points or take a few warscroll battalions and you can spam units coming back to (un)life!
Grand Host of Nagash
- This is Nagash's Legion/new overall Death force and it can include any units in the battletome. If it includes Nagash he must be the general (no shit).
- This is the only Allegiance that can actually have Nagash in a list, besides Death.
- Chosen Guardians: Morghast units get +1 attack! Very scary given their damage output. (This is one more reason why Halberds outmatch Swords in almost every scenario)
- Legions Innumerable: Roll a die for each SUMMONABLE unit, on a 5+, heal d3 wounds to it or if the unit only has 1 wound models, return d3 models to it. Handy to have, remember this all happens in your hero phase so choose the order in which you heal things carefully. For example, if you use this first you can return those models in a way that puts the unit in range of a hero for more resurrection.
- Additional Battleline:
- Grave Guard
- Morghasts (When Nagash is General) No longer Battleline, since newer warscroll/pitched battle profile in Ossiarch Bonereaper Battletome!
- Master of Death: Re-roll results of 1 (i.e. rolls of 1-2 on a D3) for friendly units affected by a Deathly Invocation that are within 12" of this general. At first glance, this seems meh, but it doesn't just affect the general's rolls. So long as the summonable unit is within 12" of the general, any Deathly Invocation will get that re-roll. If you bunch your heroes and summonable units together you can expect to replenish a huge amount of wounds/models per turn.
- Chosen Champion: Add 1 to the Damage characteristic of melee weapon used by this general for attacks made against enemy HEROES. Has it's uses, unfortunately, you'll be stuck hunting down heroes to gain that extra damage. Don't try to use this to buff up damage caused by Mortal Wounds since they don't use the normal attack sequence (or the Damage characteristic for the melee weapons). This is really only useful on melee heroes that hunt opposing heroes and don't rely on mortal wounds, so pretty much sucks outside of that particular use case.
- Bane of he Living: Re-roll wound rolls of 1 for this general for attacks made against enemy units that do not have the DEATH keyword. Pretty good against Order, Chaos and Destruction to make your general more killy. Useless against opposing Death armies.
- Aura of Ages: At the start of the combat phase, roll a dice for each enemy unit with 3" of this general. On a 4+ subtract 1 from hit rolls made for that unit until the end of the combat phase. If your general is looking to get into the thick of things then this is pretty dang useful at keeping him alive. Situational with backfield generals but a decent pick all the same.
- Ancient Strategist: Re-roll failed charge rolls for friendly DEATHRATTLE and MORGHAST units within 9" of this general. Re-rolls are always great to ensure your army gets to where it needs to be. A good pick for Deathrattle armies.
- Lord of Nagashizzar: Add 1 to the Attacks characteristic of melee weapons used by friendly DEATHRATTLE units within 6" of this general. If your playing a predominately Deathrattle army (which you should be if your playing Grand Host of Nagash) then this is amazeballs. If you're not, it's really bad.
Artefacts of Nagash
- Deathforced Chain: At the start of your hero phase, the bearer heals 1 wound that has been allocated to it. Pretty useful for keeping your hero alive.
- Balefire Lantern: Subtract 1 from wound rolls for enemy units within 6" of the bearer. In addition, re-roll successful casting rolls for enemy WIZARDS within 6" of the bearer. This is amazing when you consider the number of additional effects that occur on 6's to wound and that's not even including the chance of protecting your general by turning wounds into fails! The anti-wizard ability is, unfortunately, a double-edged sword, as although they have to roll twice, the second roll could end up being higher making it harder to unbind.
- Grave-sand Timeglass: While the bearer is on the battlefield, once per battle, in your hero phase, you can pick an enemy HERO on the battlefield. The enemy hero suffers d3 mortal wounds. At the start of each of your subsequent hero phases, roll a dice. On a 4+ the enemy hero suffers 1 mortal wound. You'll always crack this during your first hero phase. It's good for sniping backline heroes but do not expect it to kill anything.
- This is what you take if your opponent has a bloodsecrator
- Ossific Diadem: Any time a friendly DEATHRATTLE model within 12" of the wearer takes a wound or a mortal wound, roll a dice. On a 6+ the wound or mortal wound is ignored. Decent protection. You can take this save and the deathless minions save thus giving skeleton warriors and grave guard another layer of protection making them that much more annoying to kill. Taking this on a Wight King also gives him an additional save and might keep him alive long enough to heal up some wounds.
- Reach of the Realm: This increases the range of one of the users spells by 10 inches. This is very good considering you can have a fucking 13 inch hand of dust. ALTHOUGH activating the artifact is a verbal action and when active the user takes -1 to all of its ranged attacks for one battle round.
- Amethyst Shard: Once per battle, in your hero phase, you can declare that the bearer will merge the shard with one of their melee weapons. Pick one of the bearer's melee weapons. Until your next hero phase, add 1 to hit and wound rolls made for that weapon. Really meh considering it's once per battle.
- Terrorgheist Mantle: In your shooting phase, you can declare that the bearer will unleash a death shriek. Pick an enemy unit within 10" of the bearer and roll 2 dice. If the total is higher than the enemy unit's Bravery, it suffers a number of mortal wounds equal to the difference. While it does give you a shooting attack, it requires an army dedicated to stacking Bravery modifiers. It could turn out to be a very fun army though.
The First Cohort Battalion (160pts, Min: , Max:) Nagash, a unit of Morghasts, and 3 or more combinations of Skeleton Warriors, Grave Guard and/or Black Knights
- Essentially further rules to augment Nagash, just in case you thought he didn't have enough.
- Ceaseless Vigil: Each time a wound or mortal wound is allocated to Nagash, you may allocate it to a Morghast in this battalion on a 3+ so long as they're within 3" of him. Pretty decent to helping Nagash stay alive which, considering his stats and reputation, he's going to be taking a lot of damage.
- Eternal Servitude: Nagash's Deathly Invocation automatically rolls a 3 on his D3 dice. Totally useless since his warscroll was updated along with the Ossiarch Bonereapers battletome.
Legion of Sacrament
- This is Arkhan's legion, if he is included in this army he MUST be the army general and if you include any Mortarch units he has to be one of them.
- The Master's Teachings: Whenever you destroy an enemy unit and before the last model in that unit is removed, roll a D6. On a 4+ pick a gravesite within 6" of them and then pick a friendly SUMMONABLE unit that has already been destroyed. Set this unit up wholly within 9" of the gravesite and 9" away from enemy models (any models that cannot be placed in this way are destroyed). Not very handy, crafty opponents can try to screw you over by removing models in a way that can keep them just out of range of a gravesite, and even then 50% of the time you're not going to get them back anyway (not to mention the game might be nearly over by the time you have a unit destroyed, and then can bring them back by wiping out an enemy unit).
- Alternative take - Running small units of fast and mildly stabby Summonable units like Dire Wolves or even Black Knights alongside your larger more permanent blocks will give your opponent something to chew and spit out very quickly, giving you a small zippy unit that you can now attempt to resurrect over and over since they will be dying relatively frequently.
- The Black Disciples: Add 1 to all casting rolls for friendly LEGION OF SACRAMENT WIZARDS. This ability is great because our magic is powerful now, so this helps our spells go off easier
and trigger the ability for them to go off twice more often. This also gives Arkhan a +3 casting modifier when he is at full wounds. Give him soul harvest, and chances are he'll never die. Considering also that for 80 points you get a corpse cart who give the same bonus and even something more, basically, every wizard in your army gets a +2 to their casting rolls, terrifying eh?
- Emissary of the Master: Lets you re-roll failed charges for nearby units. A solid choice but not as good as equivalents in other armies.
- Dark Acolyte: Makes the general a Wizard, or grants them an additional spell if they are already a Wizard. Useful if you want a magic heavy army, though it's not like there's a shortage of Wizards in this list. Maybe useful for a Wight King with a battle standard.
- Mark of the Favored: Each time the general is targeted by an attack in combat, the attacking unit suffers a mortal wound on a 6+. While it sounds useful, so far this trait has generated Skub due to poor wording in the rules, and so far even the FAQ hasn't satisfied the debaters.
- Peerless Commander: Allows the general to summon a unit "in the grave" while further away from a gravesite.
- Mastery of Death: Grants a bonus move to units in the hero phase. When combined with the Deathmarch battalion's bonus move, Deathrattle units can be moving up to 7 extra inches in the hero phase. Very nice, especially on Black Knights.
- Bound to the Master: The General can use Arkhan the Black's Command Ability. This is useful if you have a variety of wizards in your army.
Artefacts of Sacrament
- Spiritcage: Friendly units gain +1 to wound for the rest of the turn if an enemy hero is slain within 6" of the bearer. This item has a very situational use. Generally pretty useless.
- Shroud of Darkness: This is...WOW! Enemy shooting is -1 to hit within 8" of the model, or -2 if they are further away. Any shots that confer mortal wounds on a 6+ won't get that bonus. This is excellent against shooty armies. While it offers better protection against attacks that deal mortal wounds on a 6+ (these are ignored automatically rather than on a dice roll of 4+), it's otherwise slightly outshone by the Wristbands of Black Gold below. However, it's still a great choice.
- Asylumaticae: Bedlam House in a box (except this one is filled with the weaponized undead souls of insane murderers) or a nod to the far better Casket of Souls. Once per game, roll a dice. On a 1 the bearer takes a mortal wound. On a 2+ each enemy unit within 12" suffers one mortal wound. Between being a one-shot, a risk of friendly fire and being outperformed by the Black Gem, it's not worth it.
- Wristbands of Black Gold: Amazing. This throwback from Warhammer Fantasy returns with a vengeance. Roll a dice for every wound or mortal wound allocated to the wearer as a result of shooting. On a 4+ the wound is ignored. Essentially an unmodifiable +4 save against all shooting. Are pesky Kurnoth Hunters sniping your best units? Has the mass barrages of those godless Kharadron got you down? If you're facing off against a shooty army, TAKE IT. Slap this on a VLoZD and, between this and magic support from the rest of the army, you can almost guarantee your VLoZD will reach enemy lines and make those shooty units PAY. If you want some lulz, you could equip a female character on foot with these and re-enact the No man's land scene from the latest Wonder Woman movie.
- Azyrbane Standard: A nod to how Arkhan freed Mannfred from the wall of Faith in The End Times. Subtract 1 from the wound rolls of enemy units within 6" of the bearer. If that unit is an Order Wizard, they also have to re-roll successful casting attempts. Though it has a limited range this is a welcome addition. Best used on a character dedicated to a support role or Wizard hunting, and especially against certain Order armies (such as Sylvaneth from the Gnarlroot Wargrove). Though keep in mind some Wizards are also monsters and thus could just lay the smackdown in combat (again, such as Sylvaneth wizards Drycha, Alarielle and Treelord Ancients).
- Black Gem: Pick a point with 8" of your character. Then roll a dice for EVERY UNIT within 3 of that point, on a 6+ one model dies. This is situational, one use only and it does carry the risk of friendly fire. While it can put the hurt on MSU, especially multi-wounds foes like Skullcrushers and Dracothian Guard, it needs a 6+ to kill them and it's weak against Hordes. It's not known if this can target solo characters or Behemoths. Not mandatory but a better choice than the Asylumaticae. BUT: it is one of the few things that can ONESHOT Morathi now, the other Death thing that can is Nagash (there is a third but that's situational - Arkhan, if he's in the same army as Nagash, due to his ability), and if you're using this and him, read your battletome).
Reach of the Realm: This increases the range of one of the users spells by 10 inches. This is very good considering you can have a fucking 10 inch longer hand of dust. ALTHOUGH activating the artifact is a verbal action and when active the user takes -1 to all of its ranged attacks for one battle round. Lords of Sacrament Battalion (130pts, Min: , Max:) Arkhan, 2+ Necromancers and a Mortis Engine
- Arkhan's magic squad, also one of the smallest battalions in the game.
- Unearthly Focus: Wizards from this battalion get to cast an extra spell so long as they're within 6" of this battalion's Mortis Engine.
- Swirling Spirits: Add 1 to save rolls for members of this battalion in the shooting phase as long as they're within 6" of this battalion's Mortis Engine. It helps a bit for keeping you around in the enemy's shooting phase.
Legion of Blood
- Vampire Centric but want to also play with other undead.
- This is Neferata's legion, if she is included in this army, she MUST be the army general and if you include any Mortarch units she has to be one of them.
- Favored Retainers: Legion of Blood Vampire Lords and Legion of Blood Blood Knights gain +1 attack. Good overall and can be stacked further with command abilities.
- Immortal Majesty: Subtract 1 from bravery for any enemy unit within 6" of any Legion of Blood units. Decent since it stacks with your standards.
- Swift Strikes: Each time you make a hit roll of 6+ in the combat phase for your general, you can make one additional hit roll for the same weapon against the same target.
- Soul-Crushing Contempt: If your general slays a model, the unit from which the model was a part of has -1 bravery this turn.
- Aristocracy of Blood: Re-roll failed charges for Soulblight units within 9" of your general.
- Aura of Dark Majesty: Another blast from the past. -1 to Hit rolls that target your general, but only in the combat phase.
- Walking Death: If you roll a 6+ to Hit with one of your general's melee weapons, you deal mortal wounds equal to the weapon's Damage.
- Sanguine Blur: The general gains 2" to their movement and can re-roll failed charges.
Artefacts of Blood
- Ring of Domination:
One Ring to rule them all...When the bearer is selected in the combat phase, pick an enemy model within 3" and roll a dice. On a 5+ you can use one of their melee weapons to attack in addition to whatever weapons your character has. Imagine killing Archaon with his own sword (or finishing him off with your other weapons if that one doesn't work), or using a Spirit of Durthu's weapon to cut down a unit of Kurnoth Hunters. If you're lucky with dice rolls and in combat, with the right units this can be excellent. Take it on a melee character, especially in conjunction with anything that allows them to strike first and, with a good dice roll, watch them beat down characters with many times their points cost. Take note that the FAQ's have confirmed it's basically just the statline for the weapon you get to use though, not abilities connected to it. So yes, you can hit Archaon with his own Slayer of Kings, but you don't get a chance to insta-gib him with it.
- Shadeglass Decanter: After armies have been set up but before the first battle round, select an enemy Hero. In your hero phase, as long as that hero is on the battlefield, you can roll a d6. If the result is higher than the number of the current battle round, they take a mortal wound.
- The Orb of Enchantment: Once per battle, the bearer can pick an enemy hero within 3". At the beginning of the combat phase, they cannot pile in, attack or use abilities. Apart from a one-shot, this is excellent. You could use this to troll major combat characters like Archaon or Skarbrand. Slap this on a character on foot in a big unit and you have an excellent tarpit.
- Soulbound Garments:Reroll saves of 1 for the bearer.
- Oubliette Arcana: When an enemy Wizard casts a spell within 30", you can roll a d6 instead of attempting to unwind it. On a 6 the spell is negated and the caster can't use that spell again for the rest of the battle. If you roll a 6, this is fucking awesome. Otherwise, it sucks since you just wasted your unbind attempt.
- Amulet of Screams: Once per battle, when an enemy Wizard successfully casts a spell, you can declare that the bearer will use the Amulet of Screams. If you do so, you cannot attempt to unbind the spell. Instead, roll a dice. On a 2+, the spell is not successfully cast.
Court of Nulahmia Battalion (150pts, Min:1070pts, Max:) Mortarch of Blood, 2+ Vampire Lords and a Bloodseeker Palanquin
- Neferata's group of fine vintage afficionados.
- The Adevore: Neferata may re-roll failed rolls to hit against enemy heroes so long as she's within 9" of this battalion's bloodseeker palanquin. Not worth paying the (already too high) price of the Palanquin as well as the price of the battalion.
- Scent of Blood: At the start of your movement phase, any unit within 9" of the Bloodseeker Palanquin gain a bonus +4" movement for that phase. Also not worth the cost since movement is not one of your issues.
- it is worth mentioning that Vampire Lords on Zombie Dragons (excluding Vhordrai) may be used to meet this battalion's requirements over stock VLs. This is hilarious, and with Neferata's CA you will have some very hard to kill, very smashy vampires sprinting around the table.
Legion of Night
- This is Mannfred's legion, if he is included in this army he MUST be the army general and if you include any Mortarch units he has to be one of them.
- The Bait: Deathrattle units gain +1 to saves while wholly in your own territory. Bonus points if you claim they're Drakenhof Guard.
- Ageless Cunning: Looks like Mannfred learned how to CREEEEED! from big daddy Carstein. Up to three units can be deployed in reserve and can ambush by moving on from any table edge, needing to be placed wholly within 6" of said table edge and 9" away from enemy units (this is their movement for that phase). Good for getting around the low movement of many of your units.
- Above Suspicion: Allows the general to be set up in an ambush in addition to the normal maximum of three. This trait is complete trash; no uses for it. Moving on swiftly...
- Swift Form: +2 to the bearer's movement characteristic and add 2 to their run rolls. If you brought a Vampire Lord on a zombie dragon and you insist on playing Legion of Night, this is the one for you. It helps your vampire beatstick get that turn 1 charge off and makes it significantly more manoeuvrable should it need to hop over to various objectives.
- Unbending Will: Re roll failed battleshock checks within 12" of the general. Pretty bad as usually your big blobs of skeletons or grave guard either don't run at all or they've been hit hard, and they're all un-undying. Overall a pretty shit tier command trait for death.
- Merciless Hunter: Re-roll wound rolls of 1 for the general. Pretty good, nothing amazing to write home about but not the worst either. Again, best on a beatstick vamp lord on a spooky dragon.
- Unholy Impetus: If the general slays an enemy model in close combat, one friendly unit within 3" gets +1 attack on all their melee weapons until the end of the phase. This is good on heavy hitting units such as unridden Zombie Dragons or Grave Guard. Alternative Opinion: Forget the zombie dragon, pair it with a blob of 40 skeletons ambushing to give them 4 attacks each at full strength. Overall the best one here as unlike a similar command trait in the Grand Host of Nagash, this one doesn't just work on deathrattle but all legion of night units. Pair this ability with a huuuge unit of vargheists or morghasts for added FUN.
- Terrifying Visage: -1 bravery to all enemy units within 6" of the general. A solid choice especially when brought alongside the standard death banners and the morghasts' penalties for bravery. Add in a mortis engine or two or a banshee and bam you've got some lethal shenanigans going on.
Artefacts of Night
- Vial of the Pure Blood: Once per game the user gains +1 to all hit and wounds rolls until their next hero phase. Way worse than it first seems when you factor in the useful candidates for it (Coven throne/ Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon) and then realize that artefacts don't affect the users mount. Pass.
- Shard of Night: -1 to hit the bearer in the shooting phase. Solid choice, slap it on a Vampire Lord on a Zombie Dragon. Job done.
- Gem of Exsanguination: The standard-issue unholy hand grenade. Pick an enemy unit within 6" and roll a die, on a 1 the unit takes 1 mortal wound, 2-5 d3 mortal wounds, and on a 6+ d6 mortal wounds. Not great but a bit of fun, overall I'd pass on it.
- The Chiropractor's Cloak: Aside from helping with your back the bearer can declare it's using the cloak at the start of any (not 1 use only) combat phase. If the bearer does it takes 1 mortal wound but for each hit roll made against the bearer of 1 or less the attacker suffers a mortal wound. Deceptively good providing you pull off the right combo. Cast Overwhelming dread on the unit you intend to charge the bearer into combat with and make your opponent weep. Best slapped on Vamp Lord on Zombie dragon (like most of these artifacts it seems) built for a turn 1 charge. Pass if you know that you'll be going up against units with a small volume of attacks but otherwise a very solid choice.
- Morbheg's Claw: If the bearer stands still, they can add 2 to all casting rolls for friendly Legion of Night's wizards within 12" including their own. Fantastic on a support character if you have lots of wizards.
- Do you know what makes your wizard standstill? The Balewind Vortex!
- Curseblade: At the beginning of the battle, pick an enemy Hero anywhere on the battlefield. In every hero phase roll a dice, on a 4+ they take a mortal wound, and the bearer heals a wound. This is a nice weapon for sniping an enemy hero and healing the bearer.
Nightfall Pack Battalion (170pts, Min:, Max:) Mannfred, 2 units of Vargheists and 3 or more units of Skeletons
- Mannfred's spooky scares, meant to create fear among the enemy's ranks according to the lore, while on the tabletop it doesn't do enough to justify its points cost.
- Swooping Predators: Charging Vargheists gain an extra attack. Do you know what's better? Paying 20 points to get a new unit of Vargheists instead of this battalion.
- Call of the Night: Mannfred can re-roll the D3 when using his Deathly Invocation ability on skeletons in this battalion. Also not worth it.
Legion of Grief
- This is Lady Olynder's legion, if she is included in this army she MUST be the army general and if you include any Mortarch units she has to be one of them.
- More Restrictive Legion, only able to take Deadwakers Deathlords, Deathmages, Deathrattle, and all the Nighthaunt. (No vampires allowed)
- This is found in Forbidden Power.
- Aura of Grief: -1 bravery for enemies 6" of one of your units.
- Dread Withering: cast 5, debuff enemy unit within 18″. Until your next hero phase that units get -1 on saving rolls.
- Wail of Doom: cast 8. Roll a dice for each enemy unit within 6″. 4+ you deal d3 mortal wounds to it.
- Shroud of Terror: cast 8, debuff a unit within 12″ until your next hero phase. that unit gets minus d3 bravery.
- Amethyst Glow: Your general becomes a wizard (cast one spell and unbind one spell). If he is already a wizard, he instead knows two spells from the Legion of Grief spell list.
- Vassal of the Craven King: as long as the general is on the battlefield, you get your command points back after use on a 5+.
- Tragic Emanations: Enemy units within 12″ of the general gets -2 bravery.
- Grave-sand Gem: each hero phase you can pick between dealing 1 mortal wound to a unit within 6″ or heal 1 wound on the bearer.
- Gothizzari Mortayry Candle: Missile weapons get -1 on hit rolls against the bearer.
- Souldrain Pendant: Roll a dice for each enemy unit within 3″ of the bearer at the end of the combat phase. On a 4+ you deal 1 mortal wound to the unit.
- The all-encompasing Vampire army, in case you wanted an undead army that doesn't have skeletons/zombies and their lookalikes. Also fullplate vampire knights with 10 feet lances and evil undead armored horses are EDGY AS FUCK and a total plus the the army.
- Deathless Thralls: Same thing different name, it allows you to ignore wounds on a 6+ if the wounded unit is within 6" of a SOULBLIGHT HERO.
- MAGIC:All SOULBLIGHT WIZARDS know an additional spell from the Lore of Vampires. Note that this also limits Mannfred and Neferata, who would otherwise be able to choose more freely.
- The Bloodlines: Now this is some sweet fluffy stuff. The old bloodlines are back and with a vendetta, a juicy bloodraining vendetta. You can select one of those for all your army and that is it, free buff for every model with the SOULBLIGHT keyword (including Mannfred, Neferata and Vhordrai!), and it still applies even if the general is slain! You may notice that some look fairly better than others:
- Dragon Warriors: The old Blood Dragons bloodline, this allows your units to reroll 1's to hit on the turn they charge. Pretty nice since the general aggressive style of the army though it would be better if you found a way to retreat and charge in the same turn. Turns mostly useless if you get Mannfred, pick something else then since his CA makes this quite redundant.
- Lords of the Night: These are the Von Carsteins. The bloodline allows your units to benefit from deathless thralls even if they are not within a SOULBLIGHT HERO. It is an okay buff if you don't have many characters, but it's outshone by every other choice here.
- Swift Death: The old Lahmia bloodline. OH BOY, this is nice. Gives your guys a +2" on movement plus the ability to move as if they can fly. I don't have to tell you how scary flying blood knights are. Its usefullness does not stop after the charge, since the +2" and fly can really help you nab some far away objective lategame and charge over enemy chaff.
- Necromantic: The old Necrarchs. Allows you to add 1 to casting and unbinding rolls for WIZARDS and give a -1 bravery to enemy units within 6" of one of your units. Can be combined with the Ruby Vial you can get -2 bravery and your standards for -3 bravery which is not bad at all. This is probably the go-to line if you want to use the Prince unique spell reliably.
- Do note that Soulblight Allegiance has no gravesites or sweet command ability that lets you bring SUMMONABLE units back to the field. You should using an elite army however so it's not like you'd get a lot of mileage out of either of those.
- Curse of the Revenant: Add 1 to the wound characteristic of your general. Pretty straightforward and not too bad but there are better choices.
- Dread Knight: The general re-rolls 1's to hit against an enemy HERO in the combat phase. This would have been cool if it affected the mount too, as it is it's not great.
- Transfix: Now we're talking. One enemy HERO per phase within 3" have to subtract 1 from his hit rolls that target the general. A nice duelist tool.
- Mist Form: This is great. If the general retreats from a fight, he can do it as he could fly and then he can charge. Really awesome if you get in a sticky situation, want to charge a unit behind the enemy lines or just want to keep getting the lance bonus if you've sat the general on a dragon. This could lead to kitting your VLoZD with melee centric artifacts, like the Saccharine Goblet or Girthstrike, and rightfully so. Your VLoZD will not be as smashy as Vhordrai but he will be more reliable and present, being able to change his target every time he retreats.
- Killing Blow: Good old extra mortal wound on a 6+ roll to wound. Goes along great with the Saccharine Goblet for having mortal wounds on a 5+.
- Blood Fury: Add 1 to the attacks of every melee weapon of the general, which translates to add one attack to the only weapon of the general (usually). Only good if you give it to a Vampire Queen on Coven Throne as it gives you a Predatory Bite attack, but don't count on it, as it's still just a minor buff.
- The Slaking Blade: Choose a melee weapon. When it has dealt at least 6 wounds the model heals D3 wounds and the weapon get a permanent +1 damage. Cool and simple, you're going to get that bonus fast (since unless you're using a Vampire Queen, all of the weapons you can choose deal 2, 3 or D3 wounds) however it's not the best choice here.
- The Scabbing Plate: If the general deal at least a wound in the combat phase he heals a wound. Since our heroes are quite slashy, that should not be too hard to do, but overall it's not worth it unless it's used with a dragon. For a foot lord the Slaking Blade can heal you at about the time you'll need the Scabbing Plate and if you really need a heal fast, just use your chalice. If it's on a dragon however, then it can really help deal with the wounds dealt to the character since with the Hunger and Mist Form you can virtually guarantee kills (causing it to healing 2 wounds per combat phase) and with the size of the model (and their reputation) you can guarantee it's going to need the heals sooner or later to keep its stats up.
- Crimson Wing: It is an angry bat. You choose an enemy unit within 30" and roll a dice. On a 3+ the bat tears out the eyes of a model, dealing one mortal wound to the unit. Not good, you've got Mist Form and regular (so to speak) bats if you really want to close in on mages, let alone the fact that you've got nothing to combo the bat familiar with.
- Sigil of the Sanguine Throne: Now this is a nice piece of awesome. Once per charge phase it allows a VAMPIRE unit within 12" of the bearer to re-roll a failed charge. Good in general honestly.
- The Saccharine Goblet: Fantastic. Other armies have items that can only be used once per game to give half the effect this item delivers. Giving +1 to hit and to wound is great in general, but it really goes above and beyond when combined with Killing Blow or Blood Fury on a Vampire Queen. The Queen's kiss becomes a lot more effective (going from 1 attack with 3+ to hit and 4+ to wound, to 2 attacks with 2+ to hit and 3+ to wound) while the regular Vampire Lords now hit/wound on 2+/2+, with 5+'s dealing a Mortal Wound in addition to their normal D3 damage. Sure there's 2 downsides, the first is that it only applies to the bearer (so no boosted handmaidens/spirits/dragon) and the second is that if you're unable to allocate any wounds at all after using it, the bearer takes D3 wounds. Honestly though, if you haven't caused any wounds with it you're either (un)healthy enough you can heal with the Chalice next turn, or you're hurt so badly the enemy units would've finished you off even without the Goblet's help. Unless you've got a great plan for the other items this is a solid go-to choice.
- Ruby Vial: Once per battle you can use this to give ALL enemy units a -1 to bravery and charge rolls for one turn. Use it wisely and keep in mind, it lasts for 2 combat phases. Also it stacks with Necromantic Bloodline and banners, so this will make units charged by necromantic Blood Knights have a -3 bravery.
This is for the player who wants the game to be on hard mode. Want to play with Ghouls, all the ghosts, Tomb Kings, and Bonereapers all in one army. Want to play Legions of Nagash, but without any of the bonuses that make them good, or do you want to play Grand Alliance: Death armies but without anything that prevented them from being shit? Then look no further! If you're interested in winning, however, pick literally any other Allegiance Ability. You are allowed to take any death unit.
- Deathless Minions: Roll a D6 when wounds are allocated so long as the unit they're being allocated to is within 6" of a hero, ignoring wounds or mortal wounds on a roll of 6+. This is not going to help all that often but it's a free benefit (and literally your only benefit, no gravesites or sweet command ability for you) so you might as well enjoy it.
- Ruler of the Night: The general increases their Deathless Minions effect to 12". Not great, there are far better choices on here.
- Predator of the Shadows: +1 to hit and wound if your general's in cover. Decent, you can fly your vampire lord into cover and get a good benefit from this or put it on a Wight King to further boost decapitating strike. The only problem will be in trying to figure out how to make the fighting take place around cover (if you're going for objectives you should look at a different trait).
- Death Incarnate: Your general drops a morale bomb each Hero Phase by rolling 2 dice, and if the value equals or exceeds the Bravery of an enemy unit within 3" of the general, the unit chosen is smacked with D3 Mortal Wounds. Combat's where a lot of your leaders want to be so this one's not bad at all, even if you need to duck behind friendly units the 3" range means it can still help against mortal units.
- Master of the Black Arts: Becomes a WIZARD with all that jazz and get a +1 bonus to cast/unbind if they're already a wizard. This is great and should be your go-to choice unless you've got a good gameplan for any of the others.
- Red Fury: On a 5+, pile in and attack again. Okay, however, the high roll might cause it to only go off once in a game.
- Supernatural Horror: The number of enemy models that flee during Battleshock within 12" of your general is doubled. This is alright, however, it isn't nearly as good as it used to be since now anyone can pay a command point to auto-pass Battleshock tests.
- Cursed Book: Any model targetting you within 3" of the bearer of this artefact must subtract 1 from all hit rolls, as long as they lack the DEATH keyword. This is a good "leader" item and it stacks great with the Overwhelming Dread spell.
- Cloak of Mists and Shadows: This looks familiar... This can be really useful to GTFO of combat that is going badly for your hero or after springing a trap. The bearer vanishes and has to reappear within 12" of their original location and 3" away from enemy models, remaining where they are if that's impossible. Take note that the effect is ONLY when you should pile in, so unless you're in combat, it's useless. Also, it's only 12", so have an escape route beforehand.
- Sword of Unholy Power: Hoo boy. A sure-fire summon spell is always welcome, especially in this faction because it doesn't require the bearer to be a wizard (so surprise people by giving it to a Wight King). You have almost all the DEATH range to choose, so use it when your chosen unit is going to do the most damage.
- Black Amulet: Once per game, you deal mortal wounds equal to the battle round to an enemy unit within 12". This is VERY situational, if not outright bad. You can only do 5 mortal wounds at most at 12", and only that much in the last turn. While it's true that this can kill a common hero or a damaged monster in one strike if by then your victory depends on that strike you should rethink things.
- Tomb Blade: Pick one of the bearer's weapons, each wound roll of 6+ heals a wound done to them or a friendly DEATH unit within 6" of the bearer. Garbage, there are better ways to heal (your vampires already have abilities/items that do this) and it'll come up too rarely and with too little benefit to matter.
- Ring of Immortality: He may not have returned, but his ring has. When the bearer is slain but before they're removed from the field roll a D6. On a 3+ they are not slain, place them back on the field within 18" of their original position, more than 3" from enemy models and with D3 wounds healed. Good for making sure your Vampire doesn't die out of nowhere (especially since they can heal with their chalice later) and if you're lucky, you can slingshot the dead character into the enemy's backlines.
Castellans of the Crimson Keep Battalion (150pts, Min:, Max:) Prince Vhordrai and 3+ units of Blood Knights (aka what you'd normally get if you played Soulblight)
- Not a soulblight battalion for whatever fucking reason.
- The Shifting Keep: Pick a battlefield edge before the game starts and place the battalion to the side. Instead of being deployed normally, at the end of any movement phase they can choose to enter from this table edge, being set up within 6" of this edge and 9" away from enemy models. Keep in mind that if you do choose to use this your army will be rather lacking on the table until they show up. If you're playing an objective based game then you might want to avoid this.
- In the Shadow of the Keep: Whilst within 15" of the table edge you've chosen for The Shifting Keep, you can re-roll failed hit rolls with your Blood Knights swords and lances. A great benefit with the same drawback.
Deathmarch Battalion (170pts, Min:, Max:) Wight King (either), a unit of Black Knights, a unit of Grave Guard and 3 units of Skeletons
- Unbreaking Ranks: At the start of each hero phase, you can return 1 slain model to each Deathmarch unit within 9" of this battalion's Wight King. It's like you have a single gravesite, only you have to pay a battalion bonus to get it, it only brings back 1 model instead of D3, and it can be destroyed by the enemy.
- March of the Dead: In your hero phase, the Wight King and all units from this detachment that are within 9" of him can make a 4" move. Solid and helps get around their (mostly) low mobility.
Arkhan's Skeleton Guard Battalion (Open Play Only)
- Included in the Skeleton Horde box, requires Arkhan the Black, 1 unit of black knights and 1 unit of skeleton warriors. Not legal in matched play as it has no point costs, as with all detachment included in "Start Collecting" boxes.
- March of the Dead: All units in this battalion (Including Arkhan) get to move an extra 4" in the Hero phase as long as they remain within 9" of Arkhan, but cannot run. Given Skeleton Warriors are 4" movement this effectively doubles their movement, making this a solid battalion for open play.
The Wraith Fleet
- A Modification to the Death Grand Alliance and gives the following two abilities but restricts you to the following Factions: Soulblight, Deathmages, Deathrattle, Nighthaunt
- Without Warning: place a single unit in reserve and if you roll a 3+ during the Movement phase, you can place it within 6" of a Board edge as their movement.
- Nimbus of Shrieking spirit: When the above unit arrives, enemies within 12" subtract 1 bravery.
When giving out additional spells, Deathmages can pick spells from the Lore of the Deathmage, Vampires get Lore of Vampires, and Deathlords have access to both. There is also the Locus of Shyish. Cast any spell from any lore on an unmodified casting roll of 9+, and you get to resolve the effect twice. Which provides a great boost to many of these spells if you are lucky (~27% chance of casting twice is pretty fucking sweet). Legion of Grief doesn't get access to any of this. Which sucks massively
Lore of the Deathmage
- Overwhelming Dread: At a casting value of 5, a unit within 18" loses 1 from hit rolls and 1 Bravery until your next hero phase.
- Fading Vigour: At a casting value of 6, a unit within 18" loses a melee attack and rolls only one dice on charges until your next hero phase.
- Spectral Grasp: At a casting value of 6, pick a terrain feature within 18", until the next hero phase, halve the movement of enemy units within 3" of the terrain at the start of their movement phase.
- Prison of Grief: At a casting value of 7, a unit within 12", until your next hero phase, when they try to move, on a roll of 5+, they can't.
- Decrepify: At a casting value of 6, a Hero within 18", subtract 1 from its wound rolls and melee weapon damage (to a minimum of 1) until your next Hero phase.
- Soul Harvest: At a casting value of 7, enemy units within 3" of the caster suffer D3 mortal wounds. Then on a roll of 5+ for each allocated mortal wound that was not negated, heal the caster by 1.
Lore of the Vampires
- Blade of Shyish: roll for each enemy unit within 12" suffer a mortal wound on a 5+. Terrible, even if you're up against an army that spams small units they usually have enough wounds in those units that this has no real effect. Pick something else.
- Spirit Gale: roll three dice and inflict a mortal wound on each 5+. if you rolled doubles, subtract 1 from their hit rolls. If you roll trebles then also subtract 1 from their wound rolls until your next hero phase. Not great, but it's better than Blade of Shyish.
- Vile Transference: an enemy unit 12" away takes d3 mortal wounds and then a friendly unit within 6" heals that many wounds. Pretty good both for keeping your Dragon topped up, as well as your Blood Knights (un)healthy. Remember kids, the caster counts as a friendly unit, so he can use this to heal himself.
- Amethystine Pinions: Increases the casters movement by 5" and grants Fly. This is an odd one since anyone who can take this can already choose to have wings by default. You also shouldn't really need the extra movement anyway, especially since that takes away extra protection you can give your dudes, or the extra hurt you can put on the enemy (you can only cast one spell with the user, why waste it on this one?).
- Soulpike: Target a unit within 18", until your next Hero phase, if the unit charges, roll an amount of dice equal to the charge roll. For each roll of 5+ the unit suffers a Mortal Wound. Excellent, your hardest hitters need to get the charge and this helps enemy units think twice before going for a long-range charge to take away your charge advantage.
- Amaranthine Orb: has a casting value of 7, draw a 1mm line that extends 12" away from the caster. Roll a dice for each unit (friend or foe, apart from the caster) that has any models beneath this line. On a 4+ that unit suffers D6 mortal wounds. Also great, pair it on a Vampire Lord that can fly (preferably not one on a dragon as that can be hard to position right) and have the line extend right down a combat cluster to rake up the enemy units hit. If you are scared of using it against yourself, then just remember that there's little to no issue using it through Bat Swarms, since they can heal all the wounds you deal to them unless you accidentally roll a 6.
While the units in the Legions of Nagash can be used alongside each other without penalty (depending on which allegiance you have anyway) there are still various factions that the dead can be broken down into. As such this section will be split between the various factions.
The super-units of the army. This encompasses the main leaders of the dead (Nagash, Arkhan, Neferata, and Mannfred), as well as Nagash's most powerful servants, the Morghasts.
- Nagash, Supreme Lord of the Undead: (Behemoth, 880pts) The biggest and baddest bitch you or anyone else can get. Costs a whopping 880 points and, if used correctly, is worth every single point. First, he has 16 wounds with a 3+ save which will be rerolling 1's because of his command ability. He also has a 4+ save against mortal wounds that reflect the wounds back on a roll of 6. His real sauce comes from his ability to cast 8 spells a turn. He knows his own 2 unique spells, both of which are fantastic; Soul Stealer which deals mortal wounds while healing Nagash on a 6+ per wound and
PimpHand of Dust which gives him a 50/50 chance of insta-gibbing a model in CC if he successfully casts it. He also knows 3 spells from either of the Lores of Death. Couple this with Arcane Bolt and Mystic Shield and he can cast 7 times a turn on his own, but he also knows the spells of all Death Wizards on the board, so go fucking nuts kids. This bitch can and will demolish units with mortal wound spam whilst also healing himself with spells like Soul Stealer and Vile Transference (if he ever gets hurt) and debuffing the survivors. He can also stare at them because HIS EYES ARE LASERS or some shit. And if you still aren't convinced he also boasts one of the scariest melee profiles in the game. The staff with -3 rend and d6 damage is great but the real sauce is that fucking sword. -2 rend and 3 damage flat hitting 6 times is just brutal and scares just about everything. And a sprinkling of spirit host attacks for more mortal wounds because yes. He also boasts some fucking amazing buffs for your army. His deathly invocation is re-rollable and affects 5 units anywhere on the board. His command ability is downright fucked, re-rolling 1's to hit and for save rolls and ignore battleshock for your ENTIRE ARMY including himself. The ignoring battleshock may not seem so important because of deaths naturally high leadership but it means you just don't have to worry about certain battleshock activated abilities like a Carnosaur roar. All in all, Nagash is one of the most well-rounded characters in the game, being an incredibly dangerous model in every phase of the game and buffing the shit out of your army, his only drawback being his insanely high points cost being prohibitively expensive at low point games and forcing you to build around him at higher points. And also fuck me his model is amazing and absolutely fucking towers above everything, just like Nagash would want.
- As of AoS 2.0 Nagash has only gotten better. Nagash's almost guaranteed casting means you can put Endless spells down left right and center, and if you are playing realm rules, then you can access another entire Lore per game.
- Mannfred, Mortarch of Night: (Behemoth, 340pts) Mannfred's price point means that he will be competing against VLoZDs, and he will almost never come up short. He has several factors which put his head and shoulders above other options. First is his command ability, a big bubble of rerolling 1's to hit and wound. This is a huge force multiplier and can be combo'd with so many units to create massive sweeping charges. Black Knights, Blood Knights, Morghasts and other fast-moving elite units become far more dangerous when near Mannfred. Since his command ability also affects his own attacks, it makes his sword of unholy power, Ghiestvor, one of the most reliable and hard-hitting weapons in the game. Ghiestvor gains +1 to hit and wound rolls if you successfully cast a spell in your last hero phase. This hitting and wounding on 2's rerolling 1's and rend -1 means that you can bank on an almost guaranteed 3-4 d3 damage from the sword alone. Couple this with his also powerful Sickle-glaive, and his Dread Abyssal and spirit attacks, he will be crippling monsters and decimating units left, right and center. He is also a competent spellcaster, able to cast 2 spells a turn, and has an ok if a bit situational, unique spell. Where he falls short is his relative frailty compared to a VLoZD. He only has a rather meager 11 wounds and a 4+ save, and whilst this is somewhat mitigated by his 2 wound regen every time he kills a model in combat, a couple of big hits will be far more noticeable. That being said, his most powerful attacks aren't linked to the dragon, so they will not degrade as he takes damage. If it comes down to a choice between the 2, Mannfred is more of a force multiplier than a VLoZD, but there is plenty of overlap. Or just take both with a shitload of cavalry and just annihilate your enemy on a first turn charge.
- Arkhan the Black, Mortarch of Sacrament: (Behemoth, 360pts) oh my if the good, old arkhan get a incredible change of his warscroll! the weapons haven't changed unfortunately, so don't expect to him to kill giant hordes, overpowered hero or terrifying monster. Before, he was the second best wizard in the LoN army, and you take him for his unique spell, the casting and dispelling bonus of +2, it's command ability and good resurrection capacity. Now he is in the group of the STRONGEST WIZARDS IN THE GAME. He now can cast 3 spells at hero phase (4 if you get his battalion), heal directly 3 wounds on 3 summonable units within 24",without rolling the D3, becoming a great healer, and most important his Staff let him cast as many arcane bolts and mystic shields as he want, even if another wizard casted them. I know what you are thinking:"but those spell suck, they are more useless than a cairn wraith!". I'm sorry to say that if you are thinking this you are a big idiot. Arcane bolt deal D3 mortal wounds with a cv of ten or more, MODIFIERS ALLOWED! this mean that if you use the battalion you get a +4 bonus to his spells, dealing D3 mortals wounds at a 6+. This can be devastating if taken together with his command ability, shooting at enemy support heros from afar and with all the calm of the world ("that lord-castellant close to your 20 sequitors is so cute! Do you mind if I deal 4 D3 mortal wounds to him?"). While all of this makes him a better wizard he get an unfortunate nerf. Curse of the years don't kill an entire enemy unit if you had to do 1+,because now a 1 is always a fail, so you will have to roll always the dice even if you reach that point. Also now he doesn't know the spells of death wizards close to him, and can use his command ability only once for hero phase. Even with those nerfs, he is generally a better wizard than before, who can fight for the third place of best spellscaster of the game (after nagash and lord kroak) against the lords of change, slann starmasters and morathi.
- Neferata, Mortarch of Blood: (Behemoth, 340pts) Lost her ability to create extra vampires in the updated warscroll. Of the Mortarchs, Neferata is the melee powerhouse (by comparison), sporting seven nifty attacks by herself, has the same 2 wound lifesteal as Arkhan and Mannfred but with a bonus wound healed if Neferata killed a hero, her Dagger of Jet has the mightiest-lord-of-Khorne ability to instagib a model on a dice roll and she also has a Dread Abyssal steed plus a spirit host following her around. Let's not forget her command ability is a -1 hit bubble that extends 15 from Neferata at full health. On the downside Neferata gets no casting bonuses, but she can cast two spells and her signature spell lets her give a selected unit the Nighthaunt abilities to fly and ignore save Modifiers (imagine casting this on a unit of Black Knights, a Terrorgheist, or Nagash to make him immune to rend on top of everything...). In her Legion of Blood, Neferata also subtracts -1 from the Bravery of any enemy units in 6 - with her command ability, she essentially gets the Overwhelming Dread spell for free and it can't be dispelled. These negative modifiers DO stack if she gets near anyone already effected by Overwhelming Dread, so imagine anything fighting Neffy with -2 to hit and Bravery (everyone else will be hitting her on 5's and have bravery 6 on average). As of AoS 2.0, the ability to use her Command in addition to other Commands gives her a huge power boost. Compared to the other Mortarchs, she does require more fine-tuning and is a melee/debuff combo character. Run her alongside Nagash and watch your enemy flail ineffectually as he tries to figure out whether he should just go for Nagash or kill Nef first to drop the negative hit modifier. Or run her alongside her old flame Arkhan so you can divide your opponents' attention between her debuffs, his spellcasting and at least 1+ deathstar unit you now have the points to bring (I'm looking at you Mortarch Harbingers). This is all while you are systematically ruining their army.
- Morghast Harbingers: (Min:2 Max:6 210pts) No longer Battleline, since newer warscroll/pitched battle profile in Ossiarch Bonereaper Battletome, only if Nagash is the general though. Excellent, it's like having a unit of characters. Harbingers roll 3D6 when they charge (so no snake eyes to fuck you over) and with their halberds (which you should always take over the swords) they put out an absurd amount of damage, obliterating everything in their path, this includes monsters and the characters riding them. Strike first and cripple whatever you're up against, they can take the retaliation when it's their turn thanks to their 6 wounds and 4+ save. Give them further buffs with command abilities if you're up against a similar deathstar, then sit back and watch the show.
- Morghast Archai: (Min:2 Max:6 210pts) No longer Battleline, since newer warscroll/pitched battle profile in Ossiarch Bonereaper Battletome, only if Nagash is the general though. The same thing as the Harbingers only they have mortal wound protection instead of 3D6 charge. More situational than the Harbingers, the Morghast can tank a ton of effects that cause mortal wounds already, but if you plan on using them as a backup for a battleline then you can definitely choose them over the Harbingers. Best Used as bodyguards for Nagash in the First Cohort Warscroll Batallion, as their 5+ against mortals works after to pass them off from Nagash. Just like the Harbingers they have the option of going between swords and halberds, but considering what you want them to be up against (elite and monsters), go with the halberds. The extra rend and damage will do you much better.
- Grave Guard: SUMMONABLE and Battleline. Before the battletome, they were outclassed by skellies but now not so much. Fear not for the Grave Guard can now regenerate models just as fast as skeletons and boost a better armor save and better rend while also having the potential to deal double damage on a wound roll of 6+. You can take 30 of these guys for a very steep price, but since they have 1" swords, it's unlikely they will all be able to attack HOWEVER they'll have enough bodies to keep from being blasted off the table turn 1. The shields are pretty helpful against rend 0, and the great blades +1 to wound really help make these guys as killy as possible so depending on what you normally face at your FLGS you should kit these guys out accordingly which will more than likely be the great blades.
- 15 seems to be the golden number for unit size. Enough that you can take casualties and still fight back but not so much that you lose efficiency from their 1" weapons.
The vampire faction and one of the most elite armies in the game, right behind the Everchosen. Good if you want a cavalry-heavy force, very fast and very hammery, not so much if you want a cheap army (both in terms of cash and points).
- Mannfred, Mortarch of Night:(Behemoth, 380pts) Read Deathlords entry.
- Neferata, Mortarch of Blood:(Behemoth, 380pts) Read Deathlords entry.
- Prince Vhordrai: (Behemoth, 480pts)He is basically a vampire lord on zombie dragon on steroids which wake up really early in the dusk and have no time for any of your bullshit. No, seriously, this guy is a fucking blender and probably a claimer for the title of smashiest hero in the game. Better statline than a VLoZD with lance, chalice and shield but his lance has an additional attack and rend -2 and a fucking angry dragon which can spit some death-fire-rape-juice that causes FUCKIN 6 MORTAL WOUNDS when full hp (it can degrade quite quickly if the enemy focuses him down but remember that he can heal). To add some gravy on a really really bloody beef, his unique spell allows him to add 1 to BOTH HIS HIT AND WOUND ROLLS. I mean, Nagash almighty, that is downright terrifying. His command trait allows a hero to attack as if it were the combat phase (this hero cannot be him unfortunately, that would have been waaaay too gross) or, if the hero is a wizard (which all of your heroes are), to cast an extra spell, so you can consider bringing another VLoZD along with him if you plan to smash some eggs with your dragon goon squad. He comes at 40 points more than a vanilla VLoZD, so if you're going to be bringing one Lord on Dragon, you would do well to bring him unless you've got a really good plan on what to do with the regular VLoZD.
- If you want an incredibly expensive deathball, run Vhordrai and Mannfred in the same army. Whilst this combo is more expensive than fucking Nagash, you have some of the highest damage potential in the game. Vhordrai's stats with Quickblood mesh super well with Mannfred's command buff, making his already crazy power incredibly reliable, and there aren't many targets for Vhordrai's command ability better than Mannfred. The only thing holding this back is the average reliability of casting Quickblood itself, though this is remedied by including (even as an ally) a Mortis Engine, corpse cart or taking the necromantic bloodline. The Mortis Engines buff to casting means that Vhordrai and Mannfred will be much more likely to cast their unique spells whilst also adding a source of regen and mortal wounds to the pair. This combo could potential put out 6+3d3 mortal wounds in a turn (not including Mannfred using a non-unique spell (Amaranthine Orb for +d6 (Or even 2d6 if double cast))) before charging and doing an average of at least 40 damage to a 4+ save opponent, and if you double turn use Vhordrai to give Mannfred a free attack in the Hero phase. If there is anything left after the attack you just pulled, either you are the unluckiest person in the world, or your opponent is cheating.
- Coven Throne: (Behemoth, 260pts) For when you really want to cherry-tap some shmucks in luxury. This thing pours out TWENTY-FIVE attacks in melee. They also allow you to reroll a single dice this model rolls per game. Still, good for getting off that spell you need in a pinch. Has a meh unique spell (Bravery test on 3D6, if they fail they cannot attack the caster, fine agent hoard not so with heroes). Can be good if you're up against mortal units, otherwise stick to stuff like Vile Transference, Amethyst Orb or Soul Pike. Its Command Ability lets you allow a Death unit to Re-roll all hit, wound, and save rolls of 1 until your next hero phase, which is great. It's also ridiculously fast with a 14" flying movement.
- Bloodseeker Palanquin: (Behemoth, 300pts) Similar to the Coven Throne, only it sucks. It can increase the attack of all Soulblight units if a Hero is slain near it, but you've already got traits or abilities for that. It has a short-range missile weapon that deals d3 mortal wounds if you roll higher than the unit's leadership with 2 dice. is also has a 12" spell that targets a hero that has a 50% to deal 1 mortal wound, 1/3 to deal d3 and a 1/6 chance to deal d6 mortal wounds. Just skip it, it's not worth the ridiculous points you have to pay for it (being 40 points more expensive than a Coven Throne and nowhere near as useful, gaining a possible 1 extra attack for your dudes instead of a shitload more damage).
- Vampire Lord: (140pts) While most armies must choose between fighter and caster, your Vampire Lord does both. He's got a great melee profile, can cast a spell a turn and has a powerful Command Ability. And since he can heal wounds by killing stuff, you want him in the thick of it. It can also have wings or a nightmare to increase his movement, with the wings letting you fly while the nightmare grants you another melee weapon. Since the command ability grants an additional attack with each weapon of the affected unit, it's best to use this on models with few strong attacks or better yet on models with more than one weapon profile. If you want to be a real jerk, use the Lord's buff on a Dragon, which turns into an absolute rape machine thanks to this. Using his command ability on a big unit of skeletons is also a great tactic to just drown the enemy with attacks. If you play carefully enough, 30 skeletons would be getting 4 attacks each (1 attack base, +2 attacks with a unit of 30, +1 from buff) with +1 to hit if they are near a lord. He has a blood chalice that gives him back D6 wound once per game (it's 'optional', but since there's no downside to taking it you should always have it), increasing the dude's (un)life span. All in all, a quite nice little hero that can be a pretty scary backline assassin, ready to debuff an enemy monster and then jump some squishy unit while topping up your own dudes or putting a serious hurt on the enemy with the right spells.
- Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon: (Behemoth, 440pts) Unless you've already taken Vhordai, there is next to no reason to take this dude as he's only 40 points cheaper and doesn't have nearly the same statline to compensate for being similarly priced (they have their uses, however, see the point below)That being said, he does still have a bunch of devastating attacks and what might be the meanest breath attack in the game, as it hits units of 6 or more models automatically and then Wounds on 2+. The Vampire, on the other hand, provides a bunch of healing to the Dragon and yet another powerful melee profile. Like all Vampires, he's a Wizard, but with a very gimmicky unique spell that will never see use. His Command Ability is providing re-rolls To Hit to a friendly Death unit, which works well with your already high to hit values (or if you really needed a Bat Swarm to hit something for once). His durability is also something to be amazed at, not only does he have a once per game chalice of blood that heals him D6 wounds, the right traits/equipment (see above) can help the dragon live far longer than most monsters too. Get Vile Transference, Mist Form and the Scabbing Plate and you'll passively heal 2 wounds nearly every combat phase, heal D3 wounds per spell cast and heal D6 wounds once per game if you really need it. Keep that statline up so that the dragon can keep ripping and tearing. This guy will have your opponents wishing they were playing Legions of Nagash.
- They can have some utility that Vhordrai lacks. Give him some spicy fucking command traits and artifacts and watch him fucking go. Say your army is from Shyish, which it should be, and give him the Ethereal Amulet for a 3+ UNRENDABLE SAVE. Or take him in a Legion of Blood where he gains +1 attack for every melee weapon, then give him Walking Death where every hit roll of 6+ doesn't roll to wound but does the general's melee weapon's damage in MORTAL WOUNDS (sadly this doesn't work for the Zombie Dragon's attacks as well or this would be overkill to make Vhordrai almost redundant) and combine it with his ability to re-roll hits AND the artifact of the realms Ghyrstrike, which will net him a +1 to hit and wound. Or a mix of the previous, and there are several other spicy combos.
- Blood Knights: (Conditional Battleline: Soulblight army, 180pts, Min:5 Max:15)Battleline. BK's are one of the most contentious units and for good reason. First, the models themselves are dated and crazy expensive. 5 of them will set you back a Baneblade (Fingers crossed for new models). Second, they are also quite expensive points-wise, clocking in at 20 points more expensive than Chaos Knights, which are comparable albeit inferior, and 60 points less than a max unit of Skellingtons. Finally, the changes to banners mean they have lost their source of model regeneration. They still heal 1 wound when they kill something, but lacking the summonable keyword, this is their only form of healing outside of spells. So what do you get for all this? You basically get Chaos Knights with Glaives, but +1 to hit, an additional attack, permanent -1 rend, and d3 damage on the charge. They also have all the standard death goodies of shields, banners, and hornblowers. The Kastellan adds +1 to attacks instead of +1 to hits. Put bluntly they are a very expensive unit that is capable of dealing huge amounts of damage on the charge. The problem is your opponent will know this and will take them out ASAP. They are fairly tough, but the loss of regen has really hurt them in this department. But this isn't to say that they haven't gained anything from the new rules. If taken in a Legion of Blood army, they each gain an additional attack (horses included) and an additional -1 to bravery that stacks with their banner. This bonus to attacks makes this unit one of the single most offensively powerful units in the game. You basically have an entire unit of Vampire Lords or Daemon Princes' on the charge. A unit of 5 will be putting out 21, -1 rend, d3 damage attacks, and 15 horse attacks every turn, at -2 to bravery. If you have a Vampire Lord within range use its command ability on them, they'll be putting out 26 attacks. If you can get some rerolls in there you'll be putting out 20+ damage a charge, enough to annihilate most units and monsters. Blood Knights are powerful, but they do require quite a bit of list tailoring and building your play around them maximize their power, but when you do, oh fucking boy will you mentally scar your opponent. It can be a good idea to take a unit of 10 if you got 400 points to spare (it perfectly fits in the ally slot, curious) and you will have a terrifying hammer unit. Remember to support them with a vampire lord, coven throne or mannfred CA for extra smashyness or with Nefertiti to make them extra annoying.
- With the advent of GH2020 these bad boys are now 180pts for 5, and way more reliable and just as powerful as before. Very strong now in a Legion of Blood or Soulblight army.
- Vargheists: (Conditional Battleline: Soulblight army, 150pts, Min:3 Max:12)Battleline. These guys are a cheap hammer unit, and man does they do work. They are not particularly durable, but they are very fast and swing for 2 damage a hit, AND for every model they kill they roll a dice and on a 6 they get an additional attack. Legion of Night loves these guys for the ability to outflank with them. They are not quite as strong as Morghasts (another hammer unit) in terms of raw power, but you are saving 60 points by taking Varghiests over them. But hey! Why not take both? It is advisable to take both as they do sort of fulfill different roles. Varghiests especially excel at murderising hordes. Those additional attacks can really stack up, as multiple damage attacks against hordes can wipe out a lot of models. This is not to say they aren't versatile, but they are a fantastic unit to clear out enemy tarpits with their sheer speed and damage. Consider that against a unit with a 5+ save (the staple for horde/chaff units), 3 of these boys will kill an average of 8 models, which will probably become more if said chaff has low morale. For 150 points this is very nice
- With the GH2019 they are battleline again in a soulblight army, so grab some of these fuckers and run them along with your blood knights to murderize some hordes while their more sophisticated kin dispatches more elite targets on the charge.
- Bat Swarms: (SUMMONABLE, 80pts, Min:2 Max:8) They're swarms. A lot of attacks, awful Hit, and Wound rolls. Their flavor heals all wounds if it inflicts a wound, but that's not why you take them. You take them because all enemy units within 12" of them take a -1 penalty To Hit in the shooting phase, which is fucking massive considering they have a 12" flying movement. Keep in mind too that their melee range is 3", in effect meaning that you can put them behind Blood Knights, Fell Bats or Vargheists to inflict further wounds on enemy units while keeping them relatively safe. Have them come up to the side of those units so that hordes can't lap around them (while still letting them heal all the damage they receive) and you'll appreciate them more.
- Fell Bats: (SUMMONABLE, 80pts, Min:3 Max:12) These are odd. They have surprising staying power with 3 wounds each, but their damage output can generously be described as lacking. However, once an enemy model in their vicinity dies, they double their attacks for the rest of the game, granting 6 attacks to each bat. If you're going to use them then you should keep them near your Blood Knights or Vampire Lord (despite their movement). Once those units kill something then these guys become great.
Spooky ghosts. The Nighthaunt have their own book and if you want to use them exclusively, you should look elsewhere first. With the release of Age of Sigmar 2.0, many Nighthaunt units have been FAQ'd to be available to Grand Host of Nagash, Legion of Sacrament, Legion of Blood or Legion of Night armies. Several of these units are pretty great in a LoN army and should certainly be considered. You still have to ally in any other Nighthaunt units from their Battletome though.
- Cairn Wraith: (60pts) The Cheapest hero and a Ghost. A hero with only four wounds, that's unusual, but understandable since the Ethereal rule already makes him annoyingly hard to kill, as it makes his 4+ save unaffected by Rend and 4 Wounds is enough to survive a perfect Arcane Bolt. What he does is swing a big honking scythe that's basically a Stormcast's Grandhammer with three swings and rerolls To Hit if the target unit has 5 or more models, so he's pretty blendy, too. In open play, you can also field 3 or 4 of these guys in an unofficial unit and watch them tear through chaff (With scythes go figure). Sadly this doesn't work as well in matched play as these guys fill up your precious hero slots and considering how useful your heroes are right now, there's barely any reason to use this guy anymore
- Lord Executioner (80pts) a Cairn Wraith that became a Hero killer. Gets an average weapon that deals 3 wounds if you roll a 6+ to wound, rejects mortal wounds on a 5+ roll and can give -1 to hit rolls at an enemy hero within 3" in melee.
- Use with a Guardian of Souls nearby and with the Headsman's Judgement, this guy can dish out some serious hurt.
- Sadly, only does the extra damage on unmodified wound rolls of 6.
- Tomb Banshee (80pts) Remember what we said about shooting? This is one of the few units that has a shooting phase in our army and her attack deals mortal wounds based on the opponent's Bravery. She has classic Nighthaunt defenses and Frightful touch BUT she only makes one attack. Her weapon has a solid profile, but it's better to keep her out of melee range and instead support your Skeletons with Deathless Minions. Her Scream has great synergy with any unit or death wizard that reduces bravery. She also is pretty affordable as far as hero units go, just make sure you don't bring her along when you fight high bravery armies like Daemons and Death. She shines vs Stormcast and grots because they have low bravery and are vulnerable to mortal wounds.
- Knight of Shrouds (100pts) The Ghost Commander, CA that grant +1 to hit for Nighthaunt. He can work very well with some of the Nighthaunt elite infantry, although he does struggle to keep up with mounted ghosts. Other than that he functions similarly to a Vampire Lord. Same wounds, similar weapon except for 2 damage instead of d3, has regen but only when killing heroes. He is alright, but for 20 points more you can get the one on a horse with a better command and an additional wound.
- Knight of Shrouds on Ethereal Steed (120pts) Mounted variant of the guy above. Similar stats, with double the movement and, one extra wound plus the extra attacks from the spooky horse, and his command ability gives +1 attacks to a Nighthaunt unit wholly within 18" instead. Actually, a better general for your Spirit Hosts now that they deal mortal wounds on an unmodifiable 6.
- Guardian of Souls with Nightmare Lantern (140pts) A Wizard healer and Ghost support. His exclusive spell restores d6 wounds/resurrect of SUMMONABLE NIGHTHAUNT unit within 24", while he also makes every Nighthaunt wholly within 12" add 1 to their wound rolls, which is phenomenal for Chainrasps and inconsequential to Spirit Hosts. He is a welcome addition to making your Ghost LoN undying.
- Guardian of Souls with Mortality Glass This variant is more useful to LoN armies than Nighthaunt ones, as while his spell only affects Nighthaunt units (allowing one to move in the hero phase, and if they retreat they can still charge that turn), his other ability is more general - enemy units within 9" of this model only roll 1D6 when charging, rather than 2. Sadly just too short-ranged to affect deep strikers, but could lead to some amusing rage from your opponent.
- Spirit Torment (120pts) Obnoxious little guy with average stats, but good weapon stats(4+/3+/-2/D3 and "2 range) and the ability to restore d3 wounds to a Nighthaunt unit within 6" at the beginning of each Battleshock phase if at least 3 enemy models died in the turn (3 wounds with no roll if the dead guys are all Stormcasts). Plus every Nighthaunt unit within 12" can reroll any 1 to hit. He is a must-have in any Ghost focused legion. Another great support piece for Etherial LoN Lists.
- Chainrasp Horde (SUMMONABLE, Battleline, 80/280pts, Min:10 Max:40) Get undead chaff, give them 6" flying and a unmodifiable 5+ save. They make superior chaff. Classic swarmy troops that deal a huge bunch of attacks, also reroll every 1 to wound as long as they're 10 or more. Get a bunch of heroes around them to buff their attack stats and enjoy.
- Glaivewraith Stalkers (SUMMONABLE, 60pts, Min:4 Max:16) Another unit with annoying attacks. They reroll every failed hit roll in the turn they're engaged in combat (either if they're the ones who charged or not) and with drummer to retreat & charge. Take note that at 15 points, 6" move and 1 wound a piece, you might want to bring larger units of them to prevent "ye olde hexwraiths-getting-deleted-in-a-single-turn" conundrum. Have a hero that heals/resurrects float around with them, and turn that 1 Wound per Model disadvantage into some tasty tasty enemy-morale-breaking heals/resurrects.
- Alternate Opinion: Never take them for anything but character hunting, as the glaivewraiths get rerolls to hits where the grimghasts do not, namely on units with less than 5 models. They have a cheap minimum unit, unlike the grimghasts, so taking a small unit to fill out a list and add even more table presence to your army is good.
- Grimghast Reapers: (SUMMONABLE, 160/420pts, Min:10 Max:30) These guys are both cheap and resilient and can pack a punch in melee with their 2 attacks and -1 Rend, especially if buffed by Vanhel's Dance Macabre from a Necromancer or Blood Feast from a Vampire Lord. You could even take one of the Nighthaunt heroes listed above, most of which have Nighthaunt-specific buffs. They can also re-roll hit rolls against units with 5 or more models, making them great against medium to large elite units and hordes. With their very high movement of 8" and the FLY keyword, they can take objectives quickly and efficiently. Unless you really want to run nothing but skeletons, consider the Grimghast Reapers as a cornerstone of your army. A good way to fit these guys into your army is to drop one of your horde Battleline units and replace them with cheap Dire Wolves, freeing up the points for a large unit of Grimghasts.
- Spirit Hosts: (SUMMONABLE, 120pts, Min:3 Max:12) Oh boy, these ghoulish ghastlies are by far one of the most underrated units in the battletome. They seem expensive at first but they come with a lot of nasty surprises. First, like all Nighthaunt units, they have a 4+ save that cannot be modified positively or negatively (for those coming from 40K it's like an invulnerable save) they have 6 attacks each and if they hit on an unmodified 6+ they deal a mortal wound instead! These guys will be dishing out mortal wounds left at right all while being durable as fuck. And if that wasn't enough they are SUMMONABLE meaning they can regen wounds and fallen units (remember they have 3 wounds each meaning that they can only resurrect on a 5+ with deathly invocation and gravesites also holy shit they have 3 wounds.) It's worth saying that units of 3 or 6 are probably your best bet seeing as they have large bases and it would be hard for say 9 or 12 to all be in combat.
- Hexwraiths: (SUMMONABLE, 140pts, Min:5 Max:20) Hexwraiths occupy an interesting spot in LoN. On paper, they are better than ever. Summonable makes them Resection. Their Frightful Touch common to all Nighthaunt Units let them bypass rolls with mortal wounds. But the buff of Black Knights means you have 2 types of cavalry to pick from, (not including Blood Knights) and in a lot of cases, Black Knights are superior. They have the ability to deal far more wounds for 20 points less. But Hexwraiths do have several things over their cheaper cousins. They have far better durability, with the classic Nighthaunt 4+ unmodifiable save. They are also substantially quicker due to having fly and ignoring terrain and models when moving, and the ability to deal MWs to a model if they do move over them. Hexwraiths also have -1 rend on their scythes, making them far better in protracted combats or if they are charged first. Hexwraiths are then better suited at striking at vulnerable enemy units. Their speed and resilience mean that they are very good at taking out enemy support elements and assassinating enemy war machines and characters that stray, as well as dodging screening units. Nothing is quite as troll-y than flying straight over your enemy's tarpit, dealing a handful of mortal wounds to it and charging the archers behind them.
- Legion Black Coach:(120pts) Theoretically, the old Black Coach is pretty good, especially if you keep buffing it with Wizards. The problem with this is that in order to get all those buffs, you pretty much need to spam Wizards, which you are already spamming in some builds.
- It is fast with a 10" move, but lacks flying (gaining it later at the Fourth Level of Evocation of Death.) and is missing the Nighthaunts penchant to ignore rend. He has the same weapon as the Cairn Wraith and the reroll hits if a unit has 5+, with the addition of 4 more attacks with his horses. So in an AOS1 Nighthaunt Allegiance army he will not level up reliably and costs the same as two Cairn Wraiths...the Wraiths will have 1 more wound, collectively, and double the good attacks on top of ignoring rend, oh and they fly.
Deathmages and Deadwalkers
Necromancers and their zombies. Your main source of cheap wounds and surprisingly effective hordes, the spells to keep your army in the fight and the Mortis Engine.
- Necromancer: (Hero. 130pt) they can use what is basically 40k's Look Out Sir, allocating wounds they suffer to Skeletons and Zombies around them, which grants them significantly more staying power. That's great because you really need these guys alive and out of harm's way. They can cast a spell a turn, in addition to the great spells the legion gives, they have a very powerful unique spell that lets a friendly SUMMONABLE unit pile in and fight twice, which gets A LOT more mileage out of your Zombies.
- Mortis Engine: (Behemoth 180pts), strictly speaking, they are not a Leader for whatever reason (interring your own necromancers and using them as weapons might have something to do with that). The Mortis Engine is a support behemoth that provides several useful abilities and attacks. First, it has 12 wounds, and a 4+ save and a movement of 14", giving it some pretty impressive stats. It has several different attack profiles, in combat, it has 2 spirit hosts worth of damage, and the Corpsemaster's Staff, which is your standard wizard attack that deals d3 damage and will never hit. It also boasts an aura of banshee screams, rolling 2d6 against any enemy unit within its range and dealing d3 mortal wounds if you beat their bravery. It has utility in its Bound Necromancer, giving +1 to death wizard casting within 12", and -1 to all other castings. Its real sauce is that once per game in the hero phase you may open the Reliquary, allowing you to roll 4d6 and everything within that range will either take d3 mortal wounds or heal them if they are death units. This ability can be obscenely powerful. Coupled with its Banshee screams it is not unlikely that you can throw out an absolute bucket of mortal wounds, whilst also healing your own troops. This makes the Mortis Engine hilarious when put near spellcasters like Nagash and Arkhan, making their casting guaranteed, or just buffing your regular Necro's and Vampires, as well as once per game healing them all and blasting anyone that gets too close. It can also be used as a hilarious tarpit, where you can throw it into the heart of the enemy's army due to its high movement and fly, and your opponent will either have to divert serious attention to murder it or just run away before it nukes and heals itself. That being said this monster will not hold up in combat against powerful melee units and is best used to support your casters from behind a wall of skeletons where it can use its ranged attacks to damage enemy units and provide a powerful counter push if you need.
- Zombies: (Battleline"Summonable", 60/320pts, Min:10, Max:60) , and for any army at that. Zombies are in a rough spot. They're actually quite good, but wolves and skeletons are stiff competition. They can get 3+/3+ if they have 40 or more models. (2+/3+ if there is a corpse cart) The maximum unit size for these guys is a whopping 60 models. They have only 1 attack each and no save BUT they are summonable and if they kill a unit in the fight phase, on a roll of a 6 they become a zombie! If you have them don't be afraid to run the zombie train, but unless you really like zombies, I would advise new players to stick with skeletons for big hordes.
- Dire Wolves: (Battleline"Summonable" 70pts Min:5, Max:30), and for any army at that. These mangy pups are actually really good thanks to the new battletome. They have two wounds and are fast as fuck which is useful for grabbing objectives and they are SUMMONABLE meaning these guys can resurrect fallen models just like skeletons can. (Although, thanks to the wording on Deathly Invocation, you can only resurrect a wolf on a result of 2 or more on a d3.) And to top it all off, these guys are going to be your cheapest battleline because unlike Zombies and *somewhat* Skeletons; they are very effective taken as a minimum sized unit.
- Corpse Cart with Unholy Lodestone: (80pts) Buffs your pups and zombies while boosting your own casting abilities and helping your units recover thanks to Deathly Invocation, what's not to like? Maybe its combat abilities, but then again you're not paying to see it win fights its for magic and raise spam.
- Corpse Cart with Balefire Brazier:(80pts) The polar opposite of the other corpse cart. Replaces buffs with hampering casting and damaging close by wizards. Skip always for Unholy Lodestone as the Brazier needs be close to the enemy which it's ill-suited for and you usually be pairing zombies with a wizard.
Your skeletons and Wight Kings. They vary between chaff and actual damage dealers. They form a very reliable backbone for the Legions of Nagash armies.
- Wight King w/ Baleful Tomb Blade (120pts) The Wight King on foot is unfortunately pretty unremarkable (The model does look cool so props if you field him). Wight King on a steed, however, deserves a special mention and there is literally no reason why you should run him on foot as it gives you nothing compared to boosted movement and extra attacks. Being a mounted unit, he is a solid addition to a unit of black knights/hexwraiths/dire wolves giving them Deathless Minions and possibly his command ability for black knights while also keeping up with them. He is pretty decent in melee but admittedly is outclassed by a Vampire Lord on Steed which is only 20 points more for a better weapon and access to spells (his command ability carries a steep price).
- Here's some food for thought. A Wight King w/ the Baleful Tomb Blade with the Lord of Nagashizzar trait also gives +1 attack to himself, while a Wight King of the Legion of Night can claim a 2+ save while in your territory to help not being shot at.
- Wight King W/ Black Axe: (120pts) Lacks a steed option and has a worse save than its Sword counterpart. Instead, the model can slay enemies that it has allocated wounds to on a 6+, while halving the damage it takes from an attack, rounding up (the remainder are negated). Not a great choice by any stretch of imagination, the insta-kill will come up too infrequently to matter while the armour isn't going to save him from good damage dealers or even normal units. If you want damage, just pay the extra 20 points to get a Vampire Lord.
- Skeleton Warriors: (Battleline, "Summonable", 80/280pts, Min:10 Max:40) Battleline for any DEATH army "Summonable". Literally, the reason you wanted to play Death. These guys are nasty when taken in 40 men chunks. If you go for a 30 or 40 men unit, always go with spears as the sheer volume of attacks thanks to the additional range will outperform by far the +1 to hit. If you take them in their smallest size, to pay the battleline tax for instance, then go for swords (if you are going for min units, just use direwolves. Better in every respect and cheaper too.) With Necromancers casting Vanhel's Danse Macabre and the command ability from regular vampire lords or wight kings these guys will sport 4 attacks each and can fight twice, bonus memes if you have the Grand Host of Nagash allegiance you can also use the Lord of Nagashizzar to give them an extra attack totaling 5 attacks per skeleton. Use both the vampire lord's and the wight king's abilities and get 6 attacks each for 241 attacks, going to 482 attacks with Vanhel's Danse Macabre. They also have a 6+++ FnP and a 6+ save that can be increased to 5+ if the enemy has a weapon with no rend. Against rend -11 or more expect them to drop like flies only to be resurrected in the following hero phase as they are SUMMONABLE and restore d3 models per hero and gravesite. Neat!
- Grave Guard: (Conditional Battleline: Grand Host of Nagash, "Summonable", 140/360pts, Min:10 Max:40) sadly not Battleline for all DEATH armies. Before the battletome, they were outclassed by skellies but now not so much. Fear not for the Grave Guard can now regenerate models just as fast as skeletons and boost a better armor save and better rend while also deal double damage on a wound roll of 6+. You can take 30 of these guys can be costly if they didn't revive, but since they have 1" swords, it's unlikely they will all be able to attack HOWEVER they'll have enough bodies to keep from being blasted off the table turn 1. The shields are pretty helpful against rend 0, and the great blades +1 to wound really help make these guys as killy as possible so depending on what you normally face at your FLGS you should kit these guys out accordingly which will more than likely be the great blades. Max size is Enough that you can take casualties and still fight back but not so much that you lose efficiency from their 1" weapons.
- Black Knight: (Battleline, "Summonable", 120pts, Min:5 Max:20) SUMMONABLE Black Knights have become an absolutely fantastic unit in LoN due to receiving a +1 to hit with and an additional attack with their lances. This means that on the charge Black Knights can put out a rather frightening amount of 2 damage attacks for a very reasonable price. They are also very survivable, with 2 wounds each and a 5+ save+crypt-shield making it very difficult to wipe the unit before your regeneration kicks in. They only have 2 major weaknesses. First is their lack of rend. This can really gimp them against some targets, but the amount of attacks they put out typically means that only a couple of failed saves can really hurt. Second is that they need the charge to be capable of putting out actual damage. If they have to go into the second round of combat or they are charged themselves they will not hold up in combat at all. This is not so much of a problem as their speed and low price point means that they should both be able to get the charge and they are cheap enough to be used as a tarpit if need be. They are best used as a fast-moving screening unit alongside Hero's like Mannfred who can buff them so they hit obscenely hard on the charge but are also cheap enough that they can be used to buffer the enemy to line up a perfect turn of spellcasting and combat from Mannfred.
Terrorgheists and Zombie Dragons! The two biggest units not covered by any existing army.
- Terrogheist: (300pts) The giant zombie bat is back and now he is more terrifying than ever. No, really this guy is straight-up nasty and he'll have your opponent screaming imba. He now sports a 4+ save which he desperately needed and carries a very deadly ranged weapon in the form of a deathly shriek. Now the Terrogheist's shooting attack is unusual as it deals mortal wounds as long as you roll over their bravery. Even Stormcasts will suffer significant losses due to the death shriek. His Gaping Maw is the butter to his biscuit when you attack with this weapon and roll a 6 TO HIT, you do not need to make a wound roll or save, automatically deal 6 MW. And then when the Terrogheists inevitably dies it explodes and deals d3 mortal wounds to each unit (friend and foe) within 3" to say fuck you one last time as it dies.
- Zombie Dragon: (300pts) Similar to the Terrogheist except has more melee attacks and a breath attack that can auto-hit by rolling equal or less than the target's model count before rolling for a hit. For more details, look at the vampires that mount them.
- Flesh-eater Courts: currently the only supported Death Faction you can Ally with. you could use Crypt Flayers like VARGHEISTS that can deal mortal wounds. Here's a thought, in 2000 point games you can ally an Abborant Ghoul King on Terrogheist and use his command ability to summon either 3 Crypt Flayers or 3 Crypt Horrors for free.
- Nighthaunt: Now with AoS 2.0 we can ally with Nighthaunt not included in the LoN book or starter set! This also includes the Mourngul who briefly could not be part of a LoN list. Myrmourn Banshees and Chainghasts are great additions to LoN as one is a dedicated anti-magic unit while the other actually gives Death respectable shooting.
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