Warhammer Army Project/Pirates of Sartosa

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Pirates of Sartosa: Warhammer Army Project, 9th Edition Tactica[edit]

Created by Mathias Eliasson, this project was a homebrew attempt at giving many of the units, nations, and factions that never got Armybooks of their own (and those left behind and never got one in 8th Edition) such a thing.

It should also be noted that Eliasson is continuously updating his work, so don't expect this page to stay current forever. If anyone wishes actually to update this page and the items that need it, later on, go ahead.

Why Play WAP Sartosa[edit]


  • You are a Pirate
  • Being a Pirate is alright to be
  • You can do what you want cause a pirate is free
  • You are a Pirate
  • You will always have a cannon, even the normal cannons are in the special slot, so you can take more of one of the best war machine.
  • human leadership but most of your army will be covered by multiple overlapping inspiring Presences.


  • Your army is entirely composed of humans with no armor and Leadership of 7 or lower.
  • You severely hurt for mobility without basic cavalry.
  • using a lot of guns doesn't mean you're not also weak against them.
  • This army is basically a glass cannon, relying on heavy hitters and volume of fire before the army dies because of nacked Pirates.

Army Special Rules[edit]

  • Naval Bombardment: Once per game, For every full 1000pts spent on your army (so spend those few last points no matter how fiddley the process is), you get D3 Cannon shots with D6" scatter that originate from the edge of your deployment zone. With a cannon's range being 48" you should fire them when the enemy is midway before they touch you.
  • Dirty Fighting: Pocket Sand the rule. Just before one of your model in the combat phase, the unit can make a hit roll against the enemy using the highest WS. Passing takes -1WS from the enemy. pointless against enemies that are hard to hit or have better Initiative, like elves (you would need a character to land the debuff on them)though if it does land you will still get more hits in.
  • Sea Shanty Singers: A musician by a different name.
  • Sea Legs: Re-roll failed Dangerous Terrain tests. Will Reduce greatly reduce the chance of losing model when moving over normally Difficult Terrain or hit by a spell that threatens a Terrain test if they move. is only on Infantry, so there is very few terrains they need to be tested on but helps when a unit flees through anouther.
  • Blunderbuss: 12" S3 gun with quick to fire, move or fire, d3 wounds and piercing 1. A decent deterrent against charges.

Lore of Stromfels[edit]

Lore Attribute: Dark Waters If a spell is cast on an enemy within 3" of water, they take d6 S3 hits. This is doubled to 2d6 hits if they're in the water. In general, don't rely on this unless you know the map well or your opponent hasn't played vs Pirates before and doesn't know what this lore does.

  • Signature Spell: Wrath of the Shark God (CV 6+) Give the target bloodlust like the sharkmen (Free attack for every unsaved wound caused).
  1. Water Blast: (CV 6+) Magic Missile of 2d6 S3 hits, augment adding another d6 hits.
  2. Drowned Man's Face: (CV 8+) All units within 18" must test Ld or take a save-negating S3 hit. Works to clear chaff like goblins.
  3. Watery Grave: (CV 9+) This is a step up from the basic difficult terrain spell. For every 2" the targeted unit moves, they add another +1 on their chance to fail. Especially stops monsters and calvary from moving
  4. Eye of the Storm: (CV 12+) Deals 2d6 S2 hits to all units within 2d6", which turns to S6 when dealing with war machines, buildings, and unique models. This randomized range makes this a tough sell.
  5. Stormfels' Jaws: (CV 14+) Magical artillery with d6" scatter. The damage is pretty neat though, dealing S5 hits with d3 wounds.
  6. Rip Tide: (CV 15+) Target must test S or be eat wounds.

The Pirates' Booty[edit]

  • Pistols of King Death: 45pts. A brace of pistols that re-roll all hit and wound rolls. Quite nice and only 45 points.
  • Lucky Levi's Hook Hand: 45pts. An off-hand weapon that hits at S+2.
  • The Bloody Nora: 40pts. A whip that adds +d3+2 attacks on the charge and +d3 attacks otherwise.
  • Sloppy Cruickshank's Long Lost Cutlass: 35pts. The first attack against the wielder in cc always fails while the wielder gets +1 to hit and piercing 1.
  • Bloody Bill's Buckler: 40pts. A buckler that makes enemies in cc take -1 to hit. For 40 points, there's way better out there.
  • Dead Man's Chest: 65pts. A chest that, when opened outside of combat, turns its unit undead with Unbreakable, Unstable, and Fear. It also adds +1 to their combat resolution rolls. If you have a disposable gang of pirates or swabbies you want to hold on at all costs, you can pop this baby on them.
  • Gentleman Jenkin's Trusty Compass: 30pts. Grants the bearer and one unit Scout and lets them re-roll reform rolls.
  • Whalebone Charm: 30pts. For a turn, this makes the enemy re-roll all wound rolls against the wielder. It also lets the wielder ignore death on a 2+.
  • Polly the Parrot: 20pts. A parrot that adds a 3++ ward against war machines and forces enemies in cc to re-roll 6s to hit.
  • The Jolly Roger: 55pts. It gives fear and devastating charge. Pirates don't have many good melee units. unless you take a big blob (likely also a BSB), it often found on a unit Sea Serpent Rider for the +1 to attacks on the charge.

Army Units[edit]

Lords & Heroes[edit]

Special Characters[edit]

  • Carmen Sicilieri: 275pts. The ruler of Sartosa is one scary bitch. her ability kit makes her the Franz on the open sea. As a Pirate Lord, she's got the IP boost they get alongside a 12" aura that lets pirates re-roll fear and panic checks. In combat, she's equally scary (and in addition to having Fear)with a brace, a sword that always wounds on a 3+ then ignores amour, and a 4++ ward save that inflicts unsavable wound if the enemy rolls 1s to wound. A Go to named General character to hold your army together and Decent at fighting other characters buts beware that she is still a glass cannon like all pirate despite the ward
  • Jaego Roth: 205pts. Captain of the Heldenhammer, a special ship that adds d3 additional shots to the naval bombardment. Alongside Booming Voice, he also makes his unit re-roll all Leadership checks, and all hit rolls in a challenge. His navigation tool gives useful powers: His map lets him use the Navigator's rules; The Arcane Moondial can turn himself and unit ethereal for a turn, spyglass gives him Sniper and identifies all the magic items and upgrades of one unit. Roth's best spot is with some gunners, with a repeater pistol (Pistol with 3 shots), sniping off characters.
  • Aranessa Saltspite: 200pts. The insane ghoulish minstrel with a tremendous hate-on for WoC and Norse. She's a very offensively-minded character, having both the chance to re-roll a d6 on charge and pursuit rolls and the ability to cast Riptide as a bound spell. Her two weapons are equally dangerous, one with poison and makes anyone wounded by it test T or take another wound, the other a javelin that fires like a bolt thrower with d3 wounds and quick to fire.
  • Giacchino De Falco: 160pts. An insane loon of a pirate with hints of Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean included. Like a Skaven, has swiftride when fleeing and is subject to a sort of insanity that can't be abated by passing a Stupidity test like Marius Leitdorf. He can make one shot with Sniper and KB against a designated enemy character once per game. He's also got plenty of defensive options, from his amulet with magic resist 2 and the power to force enemies to re-roll a 6 to wound him and a 5++ parry save that gets better the more he's wounded.
  • Long Drong Slayer: 125pts. The legendary dwarf pirate. He's got the rules of a powder monkey on top of his normal dwarf rules and also makes all enemies (except undead, Nurgle, or daemon units) take -1 to hit him or his unit at the cost of making his unit deploy further away from the others.
  • Krusher the Anchorman: 180pts. An Ogre pirate. He grabs Immunity (Psychology) and has a pet that makes enemies take -1 to hit him in the first round of combat if they don't pass a Ld check. He possesses a brace of pistols with 24" range and has a magical great weapon that re-rolls 1s to hit and deals d3 wounds.
  • Fleur and Estella: 150pts.A pair of skirmishing pirate lasses, possibly inspired by Anne Bonny and Mary Read. Estella has a 6++ parry from dual wielding that improves to 5++ if her WS of 5 is better (Most competent combat commanders likely will negate this) while Fleur fires four shots from her brace of pistols. Estella is also subject to hatred and frenzy if Fleur is killed.
  • Mr Bill: 90pts. A quartermaster with a pet salamander. As he's no pirate lord, he's only got Sea Legs, but he gives one unit either light armour or armour piercing 1. He's also got an Ogre Ironfist (An off-hand weapon that doubles as a shield) and a cheap S2 flaming blast.
  • Doctor "Doc" Exmelin: 95pts. As a ship surgeon, he has the ability to bring back d3 models in his unit (d6 once per game) which is handy for prolonging a unit's lifetime for a bit. Any unit he joins also benefits from a 6++ parry (Upped by +1 if they have one already).

Generic Characters[edit]

  • Pirate Lord/Captain: These guys are important as they always share their leadership to others within 6". Of course, this is also added to make a general's Inspiring Presence 18". This allows your spread out army to get that needed LD boost. Defensively, they only they can only go up to the limited light armor, unlike melee characters from other factions, but they have pistols and blunderbusses for days and can equip bucklers.
  • Pirate Sorcerer/Lord: Your basic wizards, with access to Fire, Metal, Heavens, Death, Shadows, and Stormfels.
  • First Mate: Your cheap-tier hero and BSB, allotted to only one per captain/lord. He's only stubborn if he's with his captain, but is otherwise a diet captain.

Masters and Idlers[edit]

Are unit upgrades like Champions for your Pirate Crews, Shipmates, or Powder Monkeys. Your army may only have one of each of the following for every Pirate Captain or Lord you have and they all come with their own stats.

  • The Bosun: when an attached unit takes a non-break Leadership test, roll 3d6 discard highest.
  • The Look-Out: re-rolls "look out Sir!" test and can use it even if the unit is below 5 models. Gives more protection for attached Characters.
  • The Master Gunner: Reroll 1's to hit when shooting with handguns and pistols. If he is put on a War Machine, you can re-roll one Artillery Dice per game.
  • The Navigator: Before the placement of scouts, redeploy the unit up to 12". With a reliance on line of sight guns and flimsy units, repositioning may help.

Core Units[edit]

  • Pirate Crew: The core of your army, with any sort of ways for armaments and a cheap cost. Grab Bucklers or dual-wielding for frontlining, grab throwing knives or pistols if you plan on blasting them. if you don't take pistols, having throwing knives is always convenient extra damage when charging or standing your ground
  • Deck Gunners: they are empire Handgunners without state Trooper for one more point. They can take blunderbusses for free. Gunline unit.
  • Buccaneers: A more dedicated Melee unit with Skirmish, +1 WS and I, and are -1 to hit in melee instead of Dirty FIghting. win battles by damage but Pirate Crews would be shuffled in for the rank bonus.
    • Something something pocket sand: Put a character (preferably one with a high WS) in your unit of Buccaneers. Buccs don't have dirty fighting instead they have 1 more WS than the regular pirate crew and a constant -1 to hit, this is good, and much more consistent than dirty fighting. However, most characters (masters and idlers included) DO come with dirty fighting, and since it affects the entire enemy unit then all your buccs will benefit from the -1 WS making them even harder to hit. It's a little cheap, but you're a pirate. (It should be noted that the First mates' magic item allowance of 25 points is just enough to buy him some Duelists Blades for a cheeky 10 WS).
  • Harpooners: Skirmishing javelin throwers. The leader can take an anti-big'un harpoon gun, it's lumbering so try not to move as much to get any value from it. A unit of 10 with a Launcher only costs a mere 80 points, remember that the Vanguard move from skirmish still lets you fire the big gun.
  • Swabbies: Your legion of expendable wastrels that don't count towards Core. You could give them an off-hand weapon to help with dual-wielding or get knives for ranged support. Either way, you shouldn't rely on them being anything more than something to die.

Special Units[edit]

  • Ship's Mates: Can only have one per Pirate Captain or Lord. An upgraded version of Pirate Crew that becomes Stubborn if a Pirate Captain or Lord is in the unit for almost twice the cost.
  • Powder Monkeys: Pistol fanatics that never run out of ammunition and have fencer S4 pistols with piercing 1. Armed with a Brace of Pistols, these fuckers get to use Pistol shots as melee weapons and shooting while charging (if the enemy breaks from those shots they have to flee as their reaction) as of the recent changes to Quick to fire, this is something that any model with pistols can do so the special rule that lets powder monkeys do that is now pointless. Matthias is updating all his books one by one however so this should get fixed. use them a shocktroopers, ways are shooting something and charge the weaken troops (still ranged units with no armour, so they won't last against a proper strength melee units)
  • Grog Lubbers: A bunch of drunkards even harder to deal with than Centigors. Their benefit comes in their booze providing an S3 breath weapon on the charge or in close combat and their buyable bottles being impressive firebombs.
  • Dwarf Sea Dogs: Dwarf Pirate Warriors, have a Slayer's lack of armor but are tougher than the rest of your pirates and Unbreakable. Make for a decent Holding force for your pirates.
  • Norse Reavers: Pirate beserkers, gaining Frenzy the turn they charge. They are the few units you have that have armour and can take a shield. A cross between a tougher holding unit and an attacker.
  • Wokou Raiders: Ambush pirate fighters from Cathay or Nippon. Each can buy a two-handed sword with piercing 1 and a 6++ parry, dual-wielding weapons, or bows.
  • Sons of Stromfels: Badass Shark-Ogres of Pirates. Each has Aquatic, Fear, and Killing Blow and attack again for each unsaved wound they make. If you want them to be truly scary, they can grab halberds.
  • Deck Cannons: Cheap Cannon that can buy alternative fire modes if grapeshot doesn't cut it for you.
    • Chain Shot: S6 and hits d3 files worth of enemies. Makes it a better troop clearer weapon rather than just the single line of Death that is a cannon.
    • Heat Shot: Gain Flaming attacks but -1 on misfires rolls. Obliterates Trolls and Treemen, while inflicting a -1Ld panic against calvary.
  • Swivel Gunners: Gunner with an S6 piercing mini-cannon of a Gun. Such a powerful gun has drawbacks, of course: Roll a 1 to hit and the model must roll another d6 with a 1 instantly killing them. Always good to kill knights or Dwarf bunkers. Notably have Skirmishers letting them make a Vanguard move to ensure they are in range turn one (Vanguard moves don't count towards move and shoot) and help them resist enemy counter-fire.

Rare Units[edit]

  • Sea Serpent Riders: Pirates Riding Monstrous eels with poisoned attacks and Stomps. Hits hard but are expensive for their durability, always provide cover fire as they maneuver to the enemy flank
  • Dark Maidens: Possessed Treekin Maidens. Instead of shooting, they can make an Enemy take a -2 Ld test during the shooting phase and they take damage equal to the amount they fail (nothing about not Chanting when in cc). They can stall and fight back.
  • Flying Galley: A flying Swivel gun Platform with two that fire to the front and back. Because it has High Flyer, it can only be charged by other flyers but nothing about blocking charges. can also be used as a roadblock against dangerous combatants while shooting them with their swivel guns.
  • Hell-Hammer Cannon: Giant 72" S10 d6+1 wound Great cannon that reroll wound and bounce rolls. Hell-Hammer Cannon will obliterate monsters and elite infinity without wards. The Hell-Hammer haves alternative versions, so you can only bring one mega cannon unless in a really big game.
    • Ironfist Mortar: S4/8 large stone thrower with piercing 1 and d3 wounds. more likely to hit more things even when scattered.
    • Triple Barrel Cannon: Act like 3 cannons Strapped together. This load's so much that it can only fire every other turn. has a 48" range but 3 cannonballs can do more damage than one super ball. Great for simply deleting things you don't like.
  • Turtigon Battle Platform: A Moving Fortress Turtle. Has a move and fire Cannon + Breathes fire. Be wary about how much damage he takes because of his attacks and breath both take a big hit if he loses enough wounds.
  • Sea Giant: A Giant with Natural Armor and lacks the random attack table. It can forgo its 5 attacks to deal a single big anti-monster attack at the end of combat.

Regiments of Renown[edit]

Building your army[edit]

Buying your Army[edit]

Warmachines"Privateer sea dogs" can cover most of your army while some of the arcane tempest models (Gun Mages and the black 13th strike force) would be great fits for mates/sorcerers.

Sons of Stromfels - Reapers weresharks fit the bill for these pretty well for £15ish (though the cheapest is only £7) Arcadia miniatures make two weresharks, a hammerhead for £15 and a pirate-themed one that costs £50 Also, Titanforges sharkmen veterans are great and one of them comes with a trident, three of them costs £39 which works out to £13 each making them some of the cheaper picks out there They aren't on the Titanforge store yet so instead, you have to order through their Kickstarter https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1084608523/raid-on-the-temple-of-serpents/description

Turtigon - the AoS giant turtle comes with two heads in the box so all you have to do is kitbash a cannon tower/raft to stick on its back (though maybe beef the leviathan up a bit with things like green stuff spikes on its shell, the Turtigons supposed to be one of those nasty snapping turtles not a graceful leatherback)

Aranessa Saltspite - If you want a model for her, you can find one from Reaper Miniatures here which when given a leg swap (meaning cutting off the legs and replacing them with Chainswords, regular swords with some notches cut into them, or the chainsaw off two of these cheap models) and a trident (a cheap Reaper one can be found off this model) is pretty much exactly Aranessa (if you're following the Reaper mini-modding guide here she'll cost you about $15, plus shipping unless you get whatever amount of other stuff you need to get free shipping). Add some greenstuff along her chinline as her sharkbone jaw chinstrap as per your sculpting skill allows, or just paint it on.

Army Composition[edit]

The question is often how much gun powder you need. Pirate Crew fills up your front lines to hold up the opponent's front lines with the killing power focused on the flanks to shoot or flank around. The more important part is remembering the line of sight weapons, at least 2 units of handguns, and some form of cannon is the minimum should bring in a shooty army book.


  • Fire: If you want more artillery, will all the S4 attacks. +1 to wound roll Yes. Don't forget Flaming Sword of Rhuin works on your guns.
  • Metal: The anti-platemail lore, lowering armour, and can give an important unit a save. A way around enemy sheilds, don't forget Enchanted Blades of Aiban works on your guns, as if you'd need it.
  • Heavens: The other weather lore, Mess with the enemy accuracy and call lightning at higher levels. Try to wind-blast an unit out of cover and into your gunlines, because it looks cool to do if nothing else.
  • Shadows: Do some mobility shinanigans with a ghost cannons and flying wizard(only mobility, not mount options). Penumbral Pendulum is a better cannon. Lets you sneakily debuff the foe for a pirate-y method of enhancing your meagre crews.
  • Death: dice generation and things that make enemies run or eliminate models if they fail a test. Always good.
  • Stromfels: a mix of damage spell, Signature lets a unit make more attacks when they wound and is rather lame, Drowned Man's Face hurts blobs, and Watery Grave forces a unit to stand still (which they won't want to do if you target this right) or take Dangerous Terrain tests. Ask you opponant to play with wate terrain otherwise pick something else.


Know how to Gunline[edit]

Sartosa may have some heavy melee hitters but the're not cheap nor hold for long. Sartosa's main strength is the quantity of shooting units you can take.

  • Line of Sight and Positioning: Gun and Cannons units rely on line of sight, so always keep in mind not to have your pirates stand in front of your guns, Aways pay attention to the X&Y especially if there is terrain that blocks or gives cover.
  • Scary with barrels: when chargeing a gun unit, instead of running, they can get some shooting if the charge in front. may not be a good idea to charge a cannon or especially a unit of blunderbusses.
  • Cannons: Cannon is your Bread and butter.
    • Normal shots do not hit as many things as stone-throwers (only hits one model per row, and is stopped if it doesn't kill a monstrous model) but will eliminate a monster with its S10 hit (But only on a direct hit).
    • When at close-ranged(12") or charged, the cannon can Grapple Firing a lot of S5 shrapnel to eliminate enemies that got to close to the line.
    • A better way to eliminate a blob is taking the Chain Shot on your cannon, letting it hit multiple columns of enemies at a safer range of 36"
    • The Hell-Hammer is a better cannon that is more likely to kill a monster, if you already have a few big guns, consider taking an Ironfist Mortar to better delete blobs or the Tripple-Barrel to delete any Monster or Character you don't want on turn 1 or 2, Yarrr.
    • Don't forget your free cannon shots from Naval Bombardment around 4 in a standard game which aren't as inaccurate as they seem (4 cannons that only scatter up to 6" will really threaten a big unit, make you opponent pay for daring to bring a block of 30 Chaos Warriors).
    • You also have you Pseudocannon-toteing Swivel Gunners which are also rather Static afer their first move and should be treated as a multiple shot Warmachine instead of a unit and an extremely stable on at that, unlike Hellblasters each gunner only has a 1/36 chance of exploding which is pretty dependable for a 15 point model in a unit of up to 10. Don't forget that Skirmishers gives enemy ranged attacks directed at them -1 to hit incase your opponent trys to shut them down with missiles

External Links[edit]

The Project's website

Warhammer Army Project Tactics Articles
General Tactics
Forces of Order
Forces of Destruction