Warhammer Army Project/Skaven

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Skaven: 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 constantly updating his work, so don't expect this page to stay current forever. If anyone wishes to actually update this page and the items that need it, later on, go ahead.

Why Play Skaven[edit]

The Skaven army is for people who like randomness, silliness and fantastic models, but don't think that liking those things should preclude you from winning. Favors lots of blocks of infantry, which the Skaven have in spades. They also have a selection of silly rules, Lots of magic attacks(great for trolling all-ethereal bastards), random abilities, powerful shooting, and a lot of things that lighting and poison weapons that ignor armour. Plus, you can shoot at enemies in combat against your Slave units. Also, DOOMWHEELS!!!! and after all what is better than man-sized rats addicted to a glowing stone and an even bigger rat with horns.

Notable Changes from 8e[edit]

Pros[edit]

  • The new magic rules make getting the good ones much easier.
  • New attribute for each Lore, happens constantly, but need to get into melee range.
    • Skaven wizards are encouraged to get into melee for their attribute debuffs, and having Verminous Valour doesn't make it as dangerous as it sounds.
  • A drastic boost of availability for Eshin units

Cons[edit]

  • Edition wide nerfs to blocks of infantry, steadfast and inspiring presence, make your units significantly less reliable
  • Edition wide buff to cavalry is absent, but you'll be eating the impact hit and high initiative lance strikes all day.
  • Significantly harder to get a decent Armour save on your characters. With the removable of unique +4 armours and being unable to take BRB heavy armours.
  • The rewritten spell lores make it harder to lean on one side or another (read: Skitterleap being an Eshin spell)
  • Hell Pit, slaves, and clan rats took major hits.
  • The Dreaded Thirteenth has been nerfed quite a bit then removed.

Special Rules[edit]

  • Scurry Away!: You have Swiftstride ONLY when fleeing. Good, your rats are not going to hold up to combat very well.
  • Strength in Numbers: How Skaven overcome their shit default Leadership. All Psychology and Break tests add the unit's rank bonus to them - the best incentive for buying fucktons of clanrats. Note that this when the general uses his Inspiring Presence that all units using his Ld score only add their own rank bonus, not his.
  • Verminous Valour: So, you're worried about your General having to fight a monstrous motherfucker of a Chaos Lord? Well, your characters can always refuse his challenge to his eternal frustration while your unit still benefits from the character's Ld value and can use Hold Your Ground.
  • Clan Enimity: Models belonging to each of the Clans (Pestilens, Eshin, Moulder, Skryre) treat each other as Suspicious Allies, and units can only be joined by characters of the same clan.
  • Mainstay Unit: This is your incentive to load up on clanrats. You need to grab a unit of them for any other core unit you take.

Equipment[edit]

  • Warplock Pistol: 12" S5, AP(1), Magic, Quick to fire, but you may hurt yourself on bad rolls. not as strong as the musket but still just as useful in the right character's hands. I always give my Chieftain one just so I can elect to stand & shoot and charge & shoot. Is it game-changing? Heck no! But when the rat version of Clint Eastwood stands in front of a Warrior of Chaos squeaking "You feel lucky punk?" your opponent will give you respect knuckles.
  • Tail Weapon: While this gives your model a bonus attack, do note that it won't benefit from anything provided by other weapons, so planning on an Ogre Blade and tail won't mean a thing.
  • Rat Hound Bodyguard: Warlord and Chieftain only. Deals an additional I3, WS3, S3 attack from your character, but like all skaven innovations, you hurt yourself on 1s to hit.
  • Warpstone Tokens: Sweet-sweet Skaven coke-crack-crack. It allows you to throw more dice at whatever spell you NEED to get off. Has the potential to roll a one and wound you but hey, you didn't choose Skaven to play it safe. And you really want The Dreaded Thirteenth!

Moulder tools[edit]

Exclusive to Moulders

  • Whip: +1A and this let them fight from two ranks behind using his full attack value, where they can let all their boys kill without exposing himself.
  • Things-Catcher: Polarm that gives KB. For the price it has, you're better off with a whip or Great weapon, than have a chance to maybe immediately kill someone.

Beast-Prods
Moulder electric weapons. Comes out of magic item allowance.

  • Shock-prod: Lighting attack Polearm.
  • Electro-Whip: a Lightning Attacks whip and +d3 attacks.

Assassin Weapons[edit]

For Clan Eshin Master Assassin and Assassin only. Comes out of magic item allowance.

  • Weeping Blades: 30pts. Magic Two-handed, Ap(1), Multiple Wounds(D3), poison attacks.
  • Warpstone Stars: 30pts. Magic Throwing weapon that's +1S, Multiple Shots (3), and Multiple Wounds (D3).
  • Smoke Bombs: One per model only. One use only. when breaking from combat, enemy pursuers roll 1d6 less when rolling distance.
  • Infernal Bomb: One per model only. One use only. while moving, the not hidden Assanin may place a bomb token as he moves and detonates it the following movement phases. It's a big template explosion.

Skryre inventions[edit]

Warlock only. Comes out of magic item allowance.

  • Warlock Optics: 20pts. +1BS, ignores cover and is a Sniper. turns your Warlock into a true range threat
  • Upgraded Warp-Energy Condenser: 10pts. +1 to channeling Power dice.
  • Warp-Blades: 10pts. Polearm that +1 to cast the Warp Lightning spell from the Lore of Ruin.
  • Warpmusket: 5pts. 24" S5, AP(1), Magical, MoF, and Unstable. a decent choice for a Warlock engineer hanging back with Jezzails. (although Warpmusket's range is half that of Jezzails, either making it quite useless or forcing the Jezzails too close the enemy (not that warlock will hit anything anyway, with BS of 3); buy slaves instead)
  • Warpforged Blade: 5pts. Magic Hand weapon that ignores armour.
  • Supercharged Warp-Power Accumulator: 5pts. can cast spells with +1 more power dice than normal.
  • Brass Orb: 50pts. once use. Is Mournfang Cavalry getting you down? Demigryphs ruining your day? What about that big ol' stonehorn? Well get out your cheap as chips warlock, equip him with this, send him to his doom and put on your best trollface as 3 Mournfangs fail their initiative test and disappear! Now it's not really safe, as they still could pass the test or you could scatter horribly but its a really cheap counter to those monstrous infantry options a lot of armies have. Or you could just throw it at a horde of dwarves. The best part, a misfire places the template on the thrower, so get into base contact for a guaranteed hit. Also, a really nice counter to the Glottkin, what with their I of 1.
  • Death Globe: 25pts. One use only. Like the Brass Orb but cheaper and deals a wound on a 4+ that Ignores Armour.
  • Doomrocket: 30pts. a one uses S5 Stone thrower that can be mounted on a Warlock. Even if you Misfire, you can still do damage to the enemy (mabey)

Tools of Supremacy[edit]

  • The Fellblade: Warlords only. 85pts. Feel like maxing out your magic item allowance on one weapon? Are you sure? Really? Ok. This is the one for you. Makes you S10, each wound caused rolls another D6 wounds, and successful ward saves must be rerolled. Ya. It's awesome but it's up to you if you're willing to drop the points on it. The only real use for it is if you're facing nothing but ogres...or hydras...the bastards...
  • Blade of Corruption: 35pts. Cheap version of the Fellblade without S10. Potentially worth it against Ogres and enemy heroes.
  • Dwarf Slayer: 35pts. +1S, Multiple Wounds (2). ageainst Dwarfs ap(1) and re-roll wound rolls.
  • Rust Armour: 25pts. Medium Armour that can negate one wound that completely pierces through the armour, but it also shatters your armour. While it's cheap, the idea of taking a naked hero should sound absolutely insane.
  • Warpstone Amulet: 30pts. It gives a 4++ Ward, but it has a chance to kill its wearer at the end of the game. It's a risk you'll have to take to guarantee your wizard's survival.
  • Warpscroll: 25pts. It's a bound spell, so only cast it if you know your opponent has no dice left. Target the most numerous horde of enemy troops on the field and let loose as every model takes a S2 hit with no armour saves allowed. Is it great? Your call. Though there are better options...
  • Skavenbrew: 30pts. a highly amusing item of much debate. On a roll of a 1... nothing happens except that your hero poisoned the punch bowl and now a bunch of rats falls down dead. 2-3 gives Hatred to everything because Skaven is mean drunks. 4-5 Frenzy because they are angry drunks. 6 They reach an Angry Marines level of rage getting +2 frenzy as opposed to +1 but since they aren't Astartes, every movement phase D6 of the little blighters' brains explode. Skavenbrew... it's a good thing.
  • Skalm: 45pts. Regenerates all lost wounds (unless your dead). Its usefulness depends on who you are facing.
  • Sacred Banner of The Horned Rat: 75pts. expensive but worth the investment against certain opponents. All enemy units within 12" have -1Ld and any unit in base contact with the banner must reroll successful Ld test. Morale can be everything in battles and being able to weaken your opponents resistance is a great boon. Careful though: a unit with this banner will be heavily targeted so plan accordingly.
  • Storm Banner: 50pts. a beastly beastly banner. Seriously any elf player or dwarf gunline that has faced a Skaven army hates this banner. Once activated it disallows flying movement and all missile fire has a -2 modifier. It also affects magic attacks that don't require BS by making them roll a 4+ before they can use the spell itself. At the end of each player turn on a roll of 4+, the effect ends. Beautiful.
  • Plague Banner: Plague Monks only. This grants the unit a turn of re-rolls to hit and wound, which is really strong if used properly, but is only single-use.

Expansion Magic Items[edit]

Weapons[edit]

  • Blade of Black Fury: 30pts. +2 attack
  • Desolate Blade: 30pts. +2 strength
  • Languisher Sword: 25pts. Enmemies in Base contact ASL
  • Cursed Blade of Delirium: 20pts. -1 to hit to attackers except Animated Constructs.
  • Headsplitter: 20pts. Sling. if the target has 5+ Toughness, wound them on 2+ and ignore Armor saves.

Armour[edit]

  • Shield of Distraction: 30pts. -1 attack to enemies in base contact. no effect against Animated Constructs.

Talismans[edit]

  • The Tenebrous Cloak: 30pts. Ward Save (3+) against all missile attacks and spells.
  • The Twisted Crown of the Horned Rat: 30pts. Regeneration (4+)
  • The Rival Hide Talisman: 25pts. reroll suceffule enemy hits against the user.
  • Shadow Magnet Trinket: 25pts.-1 to hit from missiles that target user of his unit.
  • Ring of Darkness: 15pts. MR(1) and only have to reveal the ring instead of secret Items or Hidden models when forced to by a spell or magic item.
  • Warpscale Pendant: 15pts. Immunity (Flaming and Lightning Attacks) and MR(2). But must make a Toughness test start of the game or loses a wound.

Arcane Items[edit]

  • Warpstorm Scroll: 25pts.
  • The Eye of the Horned: 15pts.
  • Scrying Stone: 10pts.

Enchanted Items[edit]

  • Pipes of Piebald: 25pts. enemies within 12" suffer Stupidity.
  • Potents of Verminous Doom: 20pts. gain Fear
  • Warpstone charm: 20pts. One use only. re-roll any one single dice roll that directly affects them.

Magic Standards[edit]

  • Umbranner: 35pts. 4++ Ward against non-magical missiles with Strength 4 or less.
  • Grand Banner of Clan Superiority: 30pts. +D3 combat resolution bonus they have more ranks than all enemy units in base contact.
  • Banner of Burning Hatred: 25pts. gains the Hatred
  • Banner of the Under-Empire: 25pts. all enemy units in base contact suffer 3D6 S1 hits every Close Combat phase.
  • Shroud of Dripping Death: 25pts. all enemy units in base contact suffer one S2 hit that ignores armour every Close Combat phase.
  • Dwarf-Hide Banner: 20pts. gains the Hatred against Warhammer: Dwarfs units
  • Banner of the Swarm: 15pts.
  • Banner of the four Black winds: 10pts. Flyers cant charge you.
  • Banner of Verminous Scurrying: 10pts.

Magic[edit]

All Gray Seers and Verminlords can exchange one of their known spells with the following:

  • Curse of the Horned Rat (18+): Okay, this is the serious shit. Your replacement for the Beloved Dreaded Thirteenth. This flat-out obliterates 3D6 models and turns them into a pack of clanrats if the whole unit dies, and there's nothing they can do against it. Even if you don't wipe the unit, that's still a bundle of models dead from the unit.

Lore of Ruin[edit]

Attribute: Musk of Fear: when ruin spell is cast, -1 Ld to all enemies within 6" until next magic phase.

  • Signature: Warp Lightning (8/16): Warlocks will want this. An amazing Lighting magic missile that causes D6 at S5. Cheap enough to spam with several different Warlocks (the Warp-Blades give them a +1 to cast it) though the misfire chance is still very real.
  1. Howling Warpgale (7/10): Remember the Storm Banner? Well, this spell does the same thing only it's -1 to hit and doesn't affect the magic abilities of your opponent. though it stacks with the -2 from the banner. Engage Trollface.
  2. Death Frenzy (9+): gives a unit Frenzy or +2 for frenzy attacks instead of +1, but causes D6 automatic wounds to the unit. Useful in the flank charges or that clanrats with spears stack.
  3. Warpstorm (10+): Zaps everyone with d6 S5 attacks on a 4+ roll, which is a lot weaker but it covers everyone within 12", allies included (though it's harder to hit them on a 6+).
  4. Flensing Ruin (10/16): Snipes a character with a 12" D3 Strength 6 Lighting attack hits.
  5. Scorch (10/14): a very reliable small template S4 hit that's flaming and causes panic on unsaved wounds. Extremely useful and more powerful than Warp Lightning on large blocks of infantry.
  6. Crack's Call (13/17): this spell is nasty in all the right ways. Form a 4D6-long line from the caster and any models under the line either pass an Initiative test (and a MR) or dies. If a building is in the path of the line it collapses on a 5+ and any unit occupying it has to take the initiative test on top of that. A bit random due to not knowing the exact distance the line will be, but fantastic on any board with a lot of buildings to occupy.

Lore of Plague[edit]

Attribute: Plague Rash: when Plague spell is cast, -1M and -1I to all enemies within 6" until next magic phase. For Plague Monks let them hit humans before most die.

  • Signature: Pestilent Breath (5/8): A breath weapon spell and therefore an absolute steal as a signature spell. Causes S2 hits with no armor saves allowed, it can be cast in close combat causing d6 hits instead of using the template. It also has a cheap augment to make it S3.
  1. Bless with Filth (8/11): gives a target unit poisoned attacks, especially effective on frenzied Plague Monks in CC (auto wound on 6+ to hit if already have poison). The best part is that it can affect units already in combat, so if you need a few more wounds this spell is a solid choice.
  2. Weeping World Sores (8/9): A large artillery spell that...deals S2 armour-ignoring hits on all under it. Just pray that it hits a weak unit.
  3. Vermintide (8+): Cracks Call lite. It's effective and hits a lot more models but is restricted by impassable terrain and water. Causes a S2 to any model caught under the template (which has a 4D6 range) (can be used in melee to deal 3D6 S2 hits to one enemy). so combined with a Wither from the turn before it can be quite catastrophic.
  4. Wither (11/14): Oh hell yes! Target unit within 12" gets -1T, I'll let that sink in. Do you say big whoop? Well hold on I haven't mentioned the best part: it last all game and it STACKS. Get two Plague Priests casting this on a T3 unit in the same turn and they will be wounded on 2+. Insert evil laugh. Remember if a model's toughness reaches 0 it is removed as a casualty. As each spell can only be known once in each army unless you've gone through all the spells, its not possible to have this spell twice in a big game, but it could be cast over two or more turns if you're feeling conservative
  5. Cloud of Corruption (12+): Kind of a mixed bag. You roll a dice for each unit within 12": on a 2+ (enemy unit), 4+ (friendly unit), or 5+ (Clan Pestilens) that unit takes D6 S5 hits with no armour saves allowed. Not bad if you have no friendly units nearby but will probably bite you in the butt if you cast it at the wrong moment.
  6. Plague (15+): neat and quite potentially hilarious. Units within 18" must take a Toughness test per model: if failed, the model loses 1W. If cast on a unit in CC it affects all units involved. After that roll a D6, if you roll a 1 your opponent gets to pick one of your units to infect. FUN*

Lore of Stealth[edit]

Attribute: Toxic Rain: when Plague spell is cast, -1 penalty to armour saves for all enemies within 6" until next magic phase.

  • Skitterleap (5/8): Your infamous instant escape button but nerfed. Teleport an infantry character within 12", 24" away. Flanking with an assassin?
  1. Warp Stars (5/10): A bit of a weaker Warp Lightning. You deal d3 S5 hits, each dealing d3 wounds, so it can be stronger, but you're risking it. Works out fine when trying to Decapitate Orges or lone Wizards when coming out of an ambush or Skitterleap.
  2. Stickypaws (6/14): You can now have a unit ignore all terrain. Skitterleap used to be better than this, but this works on all units and not just characters. With the Speed of Skaven, Marching through a lava pound or Mountain is worth it with no downsides.
  3. Armour of Darkness (7/10): This is a nice way to guarantee mob survival. Not only do missiles take -1 to hit a unit under this spell, but they also add +1 to their armour.
  4. Black Whirlwind (7/11): The sneaky artillery spell. This also does S2 hits, but it also takes -1 to WS/BS/I that's separate from the hit, and that's class.
  5. Swiftscamper (9/18): Skaven now go into "maximum overdrive". One unit's movement now doubles (basically turns their movement into 10") and they can re-roll their pursuit/flee distances so you can be anywhere.
  6. Veil of Shadows (11+): a magical vortex that infects S3 hits and Disrupts the unit for the turn (can not add extra ranks during the combat score or be steadfast). if combined with a devastating charge of artillery fire (and luck), can lead to mass routs.

Unit Analysis[edit]

Lords & Heroes[edit]

Named Characters[edit]

Note: Under the current edition, named characters tend to be overpriced; you can pretty easily emulate most named characters from scratch and save yourself some points. That said, a few named characters do have abilities and wargear or wargear combos unique to them, so if you absolutely need to have them, go ahead. Just make sure you're really getting your points worth. Among Skaven, this is doubly true, since one of the main advantages of Skaven characters is how cheap they are.

  • Thanquol and Boneripper: Do you want your army led by a drugged up failure with his mechanical bodyguard? Okay, so that's kinda mean, but he's not bad. He comes with some amusing special rules (his Ward Save deflecting onto a nearby model is funny, as is his kinda janky wound regeneration) and Boneripper can be nasty but like Skrolk, he costs way too much to be properly competitive (60 more than a vanilla Seer on a Bell when you take Boneripper classic). So he's non-competitive, but if you wanna take him for fluff reasons, he's an amusing addition. Keep him out of Tournament lists.
    • Boneripper Mark II: If you spend 105 more points, you can upgrade your Boneripper into his End Times iteration, complete with Thanquol riding on top. This adds +1 to S, W, and A and also turns that one Warpfire Thrower into FOUR (Okay, it's really two with re-rolls to wound). These can also be replaced with Warpfire Braziers, huge fists that act like plague censers. While this makes Thanquol much more of a threat, he becomes an equally bigger target as Boneripper is now a Monster and still suffers from 1 Initiative.
  • Lord Skreech Verminking: The greatest Vermin Lord and the avatar of the Horned Rat. Quite powerful in combat, being able to switch between ASF dagger and Multiple Wounds Doomglaive every turn, but that's not why you take this beauty. Being the biggest dick in a race of dicks, Skreech can take from the Lore of Ruin, Plague, and Stealth and always knows Curse of the Horned Rat (aka the Diet Dreaded Thirteenth) and CAN. REROLL. DICE. WHEN. CASTING. IT. That said he has his downsides, it's very hard to cast and you're running the risk of cascading your 500 point monster in regular magic. Like every other vermin lord, he is expensive, has no armour and only a 5+ ward, slow(8") with no flying and unable to skitter leap himself. Still, he can be incredibly fun (and frustrating - for enemies) in casual games and face it, you didn't pick up Skaven for boring reliability.
  • Queek Head-Taker: He's a reliable combat character, and unlike a lot of Skaven heroes/lords, he can actually punch out other lords in a Challenge. He can be truly brutal against high armor save guys, which is always nice. If you're tailoring a list to take on Dwarves, definitely give this guy a look, as he'll do an average of 4-5 kills per round against them. Still a little too pricy, but a solid all-around choice. Also the EMPRAH in disguise. Also, he can upgrade a unit of Stormvermin for 2 points a model to add S to make a unit of S5 I5 WS4 Stormvermin. Its great weapon rats without the initiative penalty. Not to be overlooked as a strong way to cut through a horde.
  • Nurglitch: The true lord of Clan Pestilens rides atop a rat with a censer-flailing caddy. He's also a serious benefit for a Pestilens army since he not only renders his unit immune to Skaven and Nurgle spells but also renders them immune to their own plague censers. His unit also becomes permanently frenzied and gains hatred, while he himself grants an aura of -1 WS to non-Pestilens units and an immediate armor-negating S4 hit to anyone in b2b, which is separate from his staff's bound spell that can instantly wound someone on a 6, making it epic on mobs.
  • Lord Skrolk: Sadly no longer makes Plague Monks core. Seriously, that's the ONLY thing that justifies his inhumanly high entry cost of 385pts (165 points more than a Vanilla Grey Seer). He comes with some fun abilities and magic items, but even they can probably be outdone for less cost (Liber Bubonicus would be more fun if it weren't for the current rules on Bound Spells and it's 1 in 6 chance of going dud when cast). Ultimately he's too pricey. If you're planning on taking a lot of Plague Monks, he can justify his points, but otherwise? Skip him.
  • Throt the Unclean: Throt could be useful if you're planning on massing Rat Ogres and Giant Rats, in which case he acts as a general even when he isn't. But, he's expensive (210 points) and while he can be nasty in close combat, especially against big things, but he's more than a little likely to eat an entire model from your own unit (including killing that Rat Ogre you really wanted to make one last round of attacks before going down).
  • Ikit Claw: Wore power armor before it was cool . Like Skrolk and Thanquol, Ikit is too expensive. Unlike them, I can say without reservation that you're not getting anywhere near enough for his cost. He seems like an odd attempt to combine a caster and a combat lord and even more than other armies, that's a job you want to split. He also costs nearly 400 points, and he doesn't do anything casting that a Grey Seer couldn't do, nor anything in combat a tricked out Warlord couldn't do. As far as melee goes, no he won't go 10 rounds with Archaon, but he wasn't meant to. His combat aspects just mean that unlike virtually every other wizard in the game, he won't get his ass kicked the moment some skirmishers pop out of nowhere. Still too expensive.
    • Alternate Opinion: Uh, yes he will get his ass kicked by Skirmishers. He's got high Strength, but only 2 Attacks at Initiative 3, so unless you're up against REALLY weak Skirmishers/Fast Cavalries like Ungor Raiders or Mounted Yeomen, he's probably fucked (never mind if he winds up against good close combat Skirmishers: Try him against Great Weapon armed Shades, lemme know how that works). Statistically he's only going to get 1 wound in per round so he can't fight off attackers very efficiently and he's so expensive (again: 395 points) that he makes a 'No duh' target, so every skirmisher and their dog Sabertusk is gonna be gunning for him. This means you have to keep him in a unit to keep him alive, but then the unit is a no duh target because it's probably gonna cost upwards of 500 points and he can't join a unit that can reliably fight off Mournfangs and the like and...are you starting to see the problem? Yeah, don't take Ikit.
  • Deathmaster Snikch: At first Deathmaster Snikch looks like a perfect Assassin until you read him, you guessed it, points cost. 150 points more than a basic Assassin, and all you're getting for that is some Weeping Blades (30 points), a Tail Weapon and a Cloak that doesn't do jack if he's in combat (where you want him) or with a unit (where you want him). Aside from that, he has higher WS, BS, I, A and LD, but not enough to make up for the the over 250 points required to take him. He will almost never see enough action to justify that cost. Don't bother.
  • Tretch Craventail: Tretch is, put simply, hilarious. He has the exact same stats as a Chieftain, for 100 points more, but he has some amusing abilities. He's got a 4+ ward (nothing to sneer at), a total of 5 attacks, a single reroll per game (do not forget it) and most amusingly, the ability to bamf out of a unit in combat and into another Clanrat/Slaves unit within 3D6. He also grants ambushers and rerolls to hit to his unit of Clanrats or Stormvermin if they're attacking on the flank or rear, but in practice that's not as useful as you might think. Obviously, he's best in tightly packed battle lines, as if he fails to reach a viable unit with his leaving combat ability, he auto-dies. He can be fun to help countercharge (draw a unit in, leave combat, charge that unit on the flank next round) but that's not as reliable as you might think. Ultimately, he's a fun but non-competitive character. He can be funny in a casual game, but don't take him in a tournament.
  • Skweel Gnawtooth: Everyone's favorite Clan Moulder monster-wrangler, mostly because he's the closest thing any of the named Skaven come to being actually cost-effective (100 points, more affordable than some generic heroes.) Skweel is an apex support-unit, and you'll never be remiss with adding his special ability (whether that be natural Poison, an extra Attack, or even Regeneration) to an attached pack of Giant Rats. This is an unfortunate nerf when compared to before, as this limits the viability of all his abilities, and he's now counting as a Mixed Unit rather than an ordinary Character. Simply put, he needs that pack to live in order to be useful. That said, he can usually be counted on to do enough damage to justify his initial extra down payment, and is surprisingly capable when it comes to self-defense, especially since he has that massive mob attached to him.

Generic Characters[edit]

Note: While named characters are judged against their generic counterparts, generic characters are examined based on their role in your army.

  • Verminlord: The Great Horned Rat looked at the Greater Daemons and thought 'Why should Chaos have all the fun?' At first blush, this guy is horrifying. M8, WS8, I10, 5 attacks, 6 wounds, S6, T6, 5+ ward, Level 4 Wizard with access to both Lore of Ruin and Plague like Grayseers in default form. Everything is slinky, right? Well, that's when the issues set in. He can't join units, he's got no extra protection from shooting, at T5 he's vulnerable to high volume S4 and above attacks, oh and did we mention that he costs 450 FUCKING POINTS? Don't get us wrong, he's a beast if you get him into combat and he can be a nasty caster under a lot of circumstances (he can even, in theory, drop a Bloodthirster, though don't count on that). But his price of entry is inhumanly high and he's a really big and obvious target (a solid Ogre Kingdoms or Dwarf list will have his ass dropped on turn 1), he's weak against getting tar pitted and he has a troubling lack of Always Strikes First. You can safely leave him out of a tournament list, but he'll make a big splash in casual games.
    • Verminlord Deceiver: Clan Eshin themed Verminlord, not too strong in duels due to lack of Doomglaive with Multiple Wounds, but has a nasty ranged attack (number of shots is equal to number of models in target unit's front rank), is -1 to hit when shot at and can Skitterleap around, and so is a perfect Verminlord for Warmachine hunting, chaff killing and general dickery thanks to owning all the Stealth Lore. Although those roles can be performed better for 475 points. Fun tactic: skitterleap behind that huge horde of goblins, outside of their range and charge them next turn. If your terror doesn't make them flee, just skitterleap back again before combat, and try again next turn.
    • Verminlord Warbringer: Has Doomglaive and a paired weapon with Killing Blow, and as such is the best duelist from all the Verminlords. Adept at casting Death Frenzy so he is perfect for leading a charge, slaughtering enemy characters in duels and buffing your hordes, so they slaughter rank and file. Maybe the best combat Verminlord.
    • Verminlord Warpseer: Always knows Warp Lightning and cast re-roll the dice when casting it, and always scoring max hits makes it a powerful blaster, although a few Warlock Engineers can do the same thing for much, much cheaper (this beauty costs 500 points). Has a Doomglaive and 4++ Ward save (as opposed to regular 5++ of other Verminlords) which you want to bring into melee, although at the same time you want to keep back and shoot lightnings at your foes... Just take Warbringer and a few Warlock Engineers. You can also sacrifice your boosted Ward save, dropping down to just 5++, for a once-off small round template attack that kills anything that fails Initiative tests. But it's hardly worth it unless you're looking at high-value low Initiative foes, like the Glottkin.
    • Verminlord Corruptor: The cheapest of the ET Verminlords, only being 5 points over the base. Always knows Plague and can reroll dice when casting it. Not too brilliant in combat (trading Doomglaive for an additional attack and ASF), although that ASF may prove handy in challenges. Reliable Plague is more interesting, being a hilarious spell, allowing you to fuck up whole games with bouncing Plague every bloody turn.
      • Note: Again remember, these guys will be shot to smithereens by a solid gun-line, making them very uncompetitive.
  • Warlord: Point for point, a Warlord is one of the most effective heroes in the Skaven book. He drops in at 85 points for a solid statline, along with the precious LD7 that lets all units with 3 ranks in his General LD Bubble hit LD10. He can have some solid magic equipment and can actually be an unusually effective combat lord (don't expect him to go 10 rounds with most other Lords though). He's a good choice. He can also take mounts (below) which are generally not the best choice but can be fun and if you expect him to do some frontline fighting and want him to cause casualties there are worse ways to up his kill count. Also, one of the few Lords who can be taken in 500pts games and be effective in them with almost no magic items.
    • Note: Although kitting out a Warlord for close combat is right and proper, don't try to make him a challenge Lord. There's a reason Skaven can run from Challenges without losing LD bonuses, and that's because a Skaven in a Challenge is a Skaven who's a corpse. Even Empire, Bretonnian and Wood Elf Lords will stand a good chance of stomping him, and if you're up against a real challenge monster (Ogres, VC, WoC, DE) you might as well remove him. No, kit your Warlord out to kill basic dudes to up your combat res, it's better for him.
      • Counternote: If kitted out properly, a Warlord can easily reach a 2+ armor save. Stuck with an Amulet of Endurance and you could have a pretty damn tanky warlord, but...consider how many clanrats you could have bought for that protection.
  • Chieftain: Your basic Hero choice, and a bloody good one at that. With a relatively good statline (as Skaven go, don't expect him to beat anything better than a Chaos Warrior unit champion. Hell, my Marauder Champion even bested one in a challenge) and access to some nifty magic items can turn him into a cheap wizard hunter in a unit of Night Runners. However, you really need him as your BSB. If you play Skaven, you MUST HAVE A BSB OR YOU DIE HORRIBLY. Srsly, if one of your Clanrat units is shot up a bit by war machines or spells, running away CANNOT BE AFFORDED. Not to worry, because they are easily cheap enough to take 2.
  • Grey Seer: Your general Lord Level Wizard, with a crap statline (though he has T4, which is kinda awesome for a wizard - especially if you gonna make him a general) and a 220 points pricetag. Like the Vermin Lord, he can mix Ruin and Plague spells freely, though if you want skitterleap, grab an Eshin sorcerer. He's a good caster for his points and you'll probably get a lot of mileage out of him, so if you have the points free, he's a good investment. Note that he too has LD6, a bastion of Skaven bravery, but a bad Idea as General as your enemy is already going to be gunning for him, don't hand them more points for killing him.
  • Master Mutator/Master Moulder: The Moulder Leaders for 115/50 points. Able to join Giant Rats or Rat Ogres as another handler, they also let all Moulder units within 12"/6" roll 3D6 (minus the highest die) on all Leadership checks. If you're fielding a whole bunch of unattended beasts, he could maybe be useful if you're confident in your rolling. They are also ok fighters with S&T4 and armed with a Greatweapon, KB Things-Catcher, or the armor ignoring Beast-Prods (still need to enchant their light armour).
  • Warlock Master/Warlock Engineer: Cheaper Lore of ruin casters with light armour at 160/65pts respectively. The Master caps off at Lvl3 but going past that is not what you want. they can also have other uses as they drew gear from magic and Skryer items: they can do shooting with Warlock Optics and a pistol or Warpmusket, + a mabey a Doomrocket; They magic spam with Warp-Blades, Upgraded Warp-Energy Condenser, and Supercharged Warp-Power Accumulator; or go close range with a unit of Clanrats or Stormvermin armed with an Enchanted armour, a Warp-Blades, Warpforged Blade, a Brass or Death Orb for all that Armour negation and -1Ld Lore Attribute goodness.
  • Master Assassin/Assassin: An Assassin is an expensive way of killing enemy Heroes and Wizards and maybe War Machines or small shooting units. That's about it. With changes to the power of characters, his stats are good, but characters can't be trusted to kill anything above a character and they dig into Hero points. There will be games where you take him and he gets killed without accomplishing a thing. But hey, you played Skaven cuz you liked the randomness and given to a unit of Scouting Gutter Runners, they'll excel at War Machine, and the like, removal. They can still support other Eshin units like extra DPS, let them discage with Smoke Bombs and area denial with an Infernal Bomb. The Master Assassin can also be a General, with the highest Skaven Ld of 8 (must not be hidden for others to use it)
  • Eshin Sorcerer Lord/Eshin Sorcerer: Your source of Stealth magic. Only go up to Lvl3, only Verminlords can get max. They do a lot of stealthy things like teleport characters, run fast and climb over everything, arrow protection, and damage. They also do little melee with poison attacks and attribute softens enemy armour for Eshin daggers.
  • PlagueLord/Plague Priest: The Lord version can only get to wizard level 2, but can equip a Plague Censer and uses spells of plague. (go figure) Essentially mandatory for any Clan Pestilens themed armies due to how much they increase plague monks' effectiveness in battle. Other than that, their only use is to take Plague Furnace. If you just want plague magic, grab a Grey Seer.

Mounts[edit]

  • Rat Ogre Bonebreaker: only Warlord, Master Mutator or Master Moulder. If you're up for modeling it, and you need a mount, this is the one you want. It's got a good statline, lets him push up rank bonuses in whatever unit he joins, runs fairly cheap at 75 points. If it had an armor save, it'd be perfect (but since it is a mount, you actually get it.). As is, it's a fun choice if you're in the mood and easily the best mount option. Just remember, he can't join infantry units outside Clanrats and Stormvermin (what a sacrifice). The warlord riding it also gains get +1 W (and an additional point of T). However, unless he rolls with Rat Ogres (which is sub-optimal due to frenzy) he has no LookOut, Sir!, making him a free kill for bearded buggers.
  • War-Litter: Not as good as the Bonebreaker but...yeah, still good. It's a cheap way of dropping a bunch of attacks on him and pushing up his armor save. If you really can't spare the extra points for a Bonebreaker and you want a mount, you could go for this one. (alternate take: kit out 3 warlords with this, a ward save, and throw them in a unit with 6-wide ranks and possibly your BSB. Laugh as your opponent is forced to divide its attacks on very defensive lords, and loses to combat res.) It also counts as infantry, so he gets a Look Out, Sir! in a unit of Stormvermin. It also can look badass. Anyway, there are worse choices liiiiiike...
  • Great Pox Rat: This. You're paying 30 points for +1 armor save and 2 S4 poisoned attacks. Woo fucking hoo. It doesn't even come with extra movement, and you can't use the Swiftstride ability for cavalry when he's in a unit (and trying to make him run touchdowns on his own is a surefire way to get him killed). If you're committed to him having a mount, drop a Clanrat and give him a War-Litter. It can also be taken as a mount for a Plague Priest or Master Moulder, but it's not a good choice for them either.
  • Brood Horror: Once in a blue moon the Forge World production team stops designing new overpriced shit for 40K, and instead designs overpriced shit for Fantasy, finally delivering one of the most hideously overpriced things in the game. For 75 points more than the Rat Ogre Bonebreaker, you get an Extra 2 Wound, stomps, an option to buy an armour save, an option to buy an extra attack to make its attacks on par with the Rat Ogre, an option to make it Armour Piercing+Magical, and an option for a breath weapon that ignores armour. If this seems fine, then remember, it's a monster, it can't fly, it's toughness 5, so it can't avoid getting killed the second your opponent sees it and points their archers/guns/cannons its way and you watch it dissolve into nothing on turn 1. Even against armies with terrible archers, it'll end up crushed against their monsters who are almost always going to be stronger and sometimes cheaper too. Not to mention all of these points could be spent on far more useful slaves or just regular Clan Rats, not on a Lord character in a Horde army.
  • The Screaming Bell: Gray Seers only. The Screaming Bell is for players who love randomness and who are playing in a non-competitive environment. The Bell doesn't come into it's own until well above the usual tournament level (recommended size is 3000 points or so). The major reason is the huge price tag, attached to an already pricey model (a Bell mounted Seer will clock in at 440 points without any equipment). But, if you can fit it in your army, it makes a great centerpiece. It can cause a lot of damage with a little luck and if there are buildings on the board, it can make everything really hilarious really quickly. Be aware, everyone will be gunning for it. Also, under the current rules, it might be worth it to make a Bell mounted Seer the General, as his LD range will be 18 inches as opposed to the usual 12.
  • Plague Furnace: Plaguelord and Plague Priest only. This monstrous contraption is an attrition monster. It kills everything around itself - including your Plague Monks... only Plague Monks die from accidents. can Shoots a Breathweapon every turn and makes stomp attacks equal to an Artillery dice roll. Don't forget to cackle maniacally as a small part of your Plague Monks choke around it along with the majority of enemy's deathstar unit.

Core Units[edit]

  • Clanrats: Your basic infantry with shields. Very cheap so you can put them in HUGE units, and you'll be needing them because you need a pack of these boys for a unit of any core units (Unless you have a general of a different clan). They will die by the truckload, but you should have so many that even if they get blasted by a cannon, there will still be a good number left. Have them in units of thirty, forty, even fifty. They also have a host of neat special rules that your opponent won't be expecting. Highly recommended. Give them weapon teams for added lulz. It's funny when a ratling gun shoots up the enemy, but funnier when it shoots your own guys and then explodes. You'll have so many clanrats it's not as though you're suffering a real loss here.
  • Skaven Slaves: See clanrats, but no weapons teams. These fuckers are twice as cheap as clanrats, meaning you'll have a lot of them. They have leadership is equal to their average dinner (ie, fucking nothing) so keep your general nearby to 'fix' that. Make sure they don't get flanked and they're not going anywhere. Keep a warpfire thrower close and have it set the unit held by the slaves on fire, since Skaven are bastards and are allowed to shoot at units tied down with Slaves. Watch as your opponent quits in a huff. Laugh. Take it like a scrawny bitch when he beats your ass in a neckbeard rage for trying to rules lawyer even more (obviously unintended) cheese. Also never horde them up; make as many ranks as your wish so they can hold units in place for your ogres or plague monks to flank charge them. Slaves aren't meant to cause damage; they take it; cause they are whipped. Note that Slaves have the option to take slings. Generally won't do much but can be a nasty surprise for your opponent if he's not expecting it (though nightrunners/gutter runners with slings are a much more efficient investment). Don't bother with spears, Slaves are there to take damage, not dish it out. Shields allow them to last somewhat longer, with effective 6+/6++ in melee.
    • A thing to beware is that they now have a new rule as of 1.5: Cornered Rats. This makes a breaking unit into a kamikaze, as they deal d6 S3 wounds per each rank of 5+ models to any units they flee through before vanishing. This can be useful to make a suicidal throw against a more threatening unit that's not quite within range of a better unit, but it can just as easily be turned against you.
  • Stormvermin: Slightly more elite infantry. Still nice and cheap so huge units are not out of the question. Units of forty or fifty are not unreasonable. Shields are a preferred choice, depending on how much fire you expect them to absorb. Stick a warlock with Skavenbrew in them for berserk armor-covered, halberd-swinging rats of doom. Or take Queek Headtaker and upgrade your Stormvermin to a REAL elite unit.
  • Plague Monks: (Clan Pestilens) Your actual elite infantry. 3 attacks (1 base, +1 for two hand weapons, +1 for frenzy). They have frenzy, which can work against them. Again, take in huge numbers. Make sure to deploy them in a way where they won't stray too far so they get the flank charge. T4 but they have no armor and are only I3 which means they will attack at the same time as the more well-armored I3 cores out there. Put them with a Plague Furnace and shit will go down (in a positive way).
  • Night Runners: (Clan Eshin) Decent skirmishing infantry/harassers. Their vanguard move allows you to set them up as charge blockers but other than that; expect them to die rather quickly. As far as choosing them above slave or clanrats is up to you. They can also choose a Warp-Grinder, so you could go to Warmachine hunting/ rearcharging with these guys. Shame their models look like deranged chimps. However, if you want a shooting unit, Gutter Runners are notably better.
  • Giant Rats: (Clan Moulder) Make a very nice tarpit but Slaves are cheaper and do it better. they are an inch faster with swiftstride and skaven Ld of 5 + Strength in Numbers. They are the faster Chaff that will tie down things on their terms and could overwhelm basic infantry while Slaves are more bodies.
  • Rat Swarms: It's a Swarm, usual rules apply. Don't discount the swarm, even groups of three or four are useful in tying down a unit long enough to get those valuable flank charges. Less experienced players are even likely to flee instead of allowing a rat swarm ties them down in combat! Str 1 is far from great, but they aren't there to kill stuff, they're there to distract and detract with its 10W. Skavenslaves are arguably more efficient though.

Weapon Teams (Clan Skryre)[edit]

Must be bought as a tagalong for your clanrats, Stormvermin, and other units. They must be deployed 3" of the unit before acting independently. They also pass any ranged hits on a 4+ to a properly sized unit within 3" as a character.

  • Poison Wind Mortar: Lobbing big glass Globes of poisoned gas has never been so much fun. Ignores armour saves, and wound on a faild toughness test. Keep it right behind it's accompanying unit for extra protection and to make use of its line of sight. A slight downside is a small template, which can make hitting MSU armies in smaller games a pain. best used on low T and high armor save units like human knights
  • Ratling Gun: Can you say tons of shots? This thing rolls for its shots then roll for more shot, but if you roll doubles, however, it misfires. Don't take this unless you're in a casual game. The Cheapest weapon team, but you pay for it with a higher chance to blow up. Although if you roll two dice per turn, you average to 7 shots per turn, with just 1/6th chance to blow up - same as PWM. Take this against smaller elite units (like elves). Ratling guns are also better against Monstrous Infantry since a template will have a harder covering more models (and the PWM doesn't kill, it wounds).
  • Doom-Flayer: This bad boys armour save will protect it long enough to get it in to close combat... The one wound that the team has will probably result in it being killed in the first round unless you manage to decimate them in the first round. Not the greatest team out of the four but has potential against smaller foes. Not to mention if it misfires in close combat there is a chance it can blow up and take some enemies out with it. Glass is half full kinda guys.
  • Warpfire Thrower: This is a good choice, but there are better, (see the Poisoned Wind Mortar) It has more of a chance to kill you, explode, and blow up on you than whatever you're hitting with the Mortars. It's essentially small blast vs a movable Flame Template. Standard rules for flaming attacks using the template apply. Best used on low LD units as this weapon is great for causing panic checks.
  • Warp-grinder: only on Night and Gutter Runners. In addition to a big battering ram, it lets your ninjas Ambush out of the ground. Still, it can inconvenience/kill the unit on bad misfire or scatter but can flank enemies in a surprising way after turn 1.

Special Units[edit]

  • Gutter Runners: (Clan Eshin) A decent choice for Warmachine hunting as they are placed anywhere on the board with Scout, Ambushers, or a Warp-Grinder. Slings, poisoned weapons, Night goblin nets that lower enemy attacks are decent investments but you might want to skip on the champion to save points if you only plan shooting. If your worried about them not showing up you can run with 2 squads of 6 or 7 but they can get expensive in the special slot that can get loaded up with points quickly.
    • Alternate Suggestion: Flanking squads of 10 units with poison and slings can melt any light-armored army. 20 shots per unit will shred most things. They're lethal against DoC, other Skaven, all flavors of Elves, you name it.
  • Plague Censer Bearers: (Clan Pestilens) At first glance; expensive for what they are but their plague censor special rule makes them useful for severely shrinking hordes down to size and what's better is that they can be fielded in small groups as speed bumps or charge deterrents. They don't have Strength in Numbers, so don't go big and keep them close enough to a leader.
  • Plague Rats: (Clan Pestilens) A slightly more expensive swarm of rats with poison, making them more dangerous when tarpiting lightly armour foe, especially monsters, guaranteed to wound on a 5+.
  • Wolf Rats: (Clan Moulder) They're 8 points apiece for a War Beast that moves 8 inches and have Frenzy. They also get +1 Impact Hits for each rank they have. There are also three upgrades available, ranging from Poisoned Attacks to Armour Piercing and Magical Attacks to +1 Toughness (bringing them up to T4) at a cost of -1 Initiative (they are Initiative 4 base). Whether these guys are worth it or not depends on what slot they occupy; at Special has some good choices but they aren't a bad choice for their speed.
  • Rat Ogres: (Clan Moulder) If hulk had a rodent counterpart: Seriously though In a unit of 6 with their masters they will rampage through anything they flank attack BUT they can be easily baited due to their fast movement of 6", Frenzy and Stupidity. Generally, a good investment particularly if they have slaves or clanrats holding a unit in place for them. They also can be upgraded further with improvement to control, attack, or durability.
  • Poison Wind Globadiers: (Clan Skryre) Anyone they hit takes a wound on a 4+ with no saves. You want these. They also have a special rule that allows unengaged models to lob globes into the same combat the engaged models are fighting which can be funny as hell. Keep in mind that against elves and other T3s you will be wounding on 4+ with most of your units anyway, and PWG's range is disgusting. Night/Gutter runners with slings are more effective (and cheaper) against T3 unless the enemy is really armored.
  • Warplock Jezzails: (Clan Skryre) Kind of a preference unit. Some people swear by them because their S6 -4 armor shots can make mincemeat of annoying heavy infantry. On the other side, they are expensive to field in any high number. To effectively shoot down a squad of 5 Chaos Knights with BS 3 and a 36-inch range means needing 5s and up for anything downrange. Not a bad unit but you really need to consider what role they will perform. These guys are easy to convert with some skaven shields and green stuff. The GW models are outdated and way too overpriced. You can make your own way cheaper and make them look way better.

Rare Units[edit]

  • Eshin Triad: (Clan Eshin) 3 lesser Eshin assassins as their own unit for the price of a hero assassin. Scouting, they can reach soft targets and kill them with their hero like stats. They are very situational as most of your problems could be solved with numbers or Skryer weapons, and they are not that durable.
  • Brood Horror: (Clan Moulder) This is an obese motherfucker, being a smaller monster more reliable than the Abomination. its something you would send against full plate warriors. also grab upgrades for this role like armour, Magical Ap, and a Breath weapon that ignores armour.
  • Hell Pit Abomination: (Clan Moulder) The Hell Pit Abomination is a really, really good DISTRACTION CARNIFEX. Mainly because its Adorable. So much so that no opponent can bear to look at it without clawing their eyes out. It's like baby kittens in shoes and jaunty hats only this kitten has a lot more heads to Awwww... at. The war machines will shoot at it and you will laugh as it shrugs off a lucky cannon shot or two (or six if you're facing dwarfs) they will probably survive long enough to RIP AND TEAR at least one unit to shreds before he goes down. But that's the best part. The Abomination knows how cute it is and has the potential to bring itself back to life to spread its adorable brand of love to those that put it down. On a side note, it can be on the expensive side and the Warp Lightning Cannon is generally a better use of points but its role as a fire magnet is unparalleled.
    • Note: Be CAREFUL with it. If any of the wounds it takes at any point in the game are flaming, it cannot stand back up again. Given how common flaming attacks are these days, you need to be careful to make sure that doesn't happen. Keep it away from Firebellies, Sisters of Avelorn, any unit with the Banner of Eternal Flame, etc. Just be aware of what you're facing and what to keep it away from. Also if you end up against a Beardy player with flaming cannonballs...well that's about it for your Abomination, but you knew that.
  • Stormfiends: (Clan Moulder) A new unit introduced in the End Times, Stormfiends are to Rat Ogres what Ikit Claw is to a Skavenslave. They're Monstrous Infantry, they cost 65+ minimum points each, and you need at least three of them to make a unit. For that, you get an M6 WS4 BS3 S5 T4 W4 I5 A4 LD7 flock of killers. Each model is armed separately with one of six weapon choices, which has certain effects on their rules depending on what you choose. You don't have to kit out each model in the unit with the same gear as his buddies, so long as you can remember what each model is actually carrying and are okay with the potential hassle of mixed armor saves in a single unit. They wear Medium Armor and they cause Fear. They also have the unique special rule Double The Death, which means they re-roll all failed To Wound rolls with their weapons.
    • Doom-flayer Gauntlets: +2D3 Attacks and has the Impact Hits (D3) special rule.
    • Windlaunchers: Lets your Stormfiend fire as per a single stone thrower with a range of 6-24" and the special rules Plague Wind (Wounds on a rerolled Toughness test, ignores armor), and Wild Misfire.
    • Grinderfists: This Stormfiend's unit has the Tunneller rule (Ambushers where they dig out of a hole a la the Trygon), and this Stormfiend inflicts 2D3 impact hits each round of Close Combat.
    • Shock Gauntlets: +1 Strength, Impact Hits (D3), ignores armor.
    • Ratling Cannons: Range 18", S4, Armor Piercing(1), Multiple Shots (3D6), Hot Warplead (no penalty for Multiple Shots, each To Hit roll of 1 inflicts one hit on the closest friendly target in range).
    • Warpfire Projectors: Fires as a single fire thrower, S5, Flaming Attacks, Multiple Wounds (D3), Move or Fire, Quick to Fire, Warpstone Weapon, Wildly Off-target (inflicts D6 hits on the closest friendly unit within 12" if misfires).
  • Plagueclaw Catapult: (Clan Pestilens) Decent but generally outshined by the Warp Lightning Cannon. S2 hits with no armor saves allowed is a decent pie plate to throw onto a large horde of (insert tarpit here). It also causes a panic test on unsaved wounds. Take if you want a clan pestilens themed army otherwise not a must-have.
  • Warp Lightning Cannon: (Clan Skryre) Low risk (in the skaven sense of the word), low price, high reward, and safe choice for rares. Its a cannon with a blast template at the end of it. The variable strength of the shot is chosen by the misfire dice which is FUN*.. Very reliable Warmachine in an army who enjoys blowing themselves up.
  • DOOMWHEEL: (Clan Skryre) A bit of a fun and random unit ( moves 3d6, fires off d3 lightning bolts per turn at the nearest unit, friendly or enemy, hits like a ton of bricks, has a weird and fun little misfire chart, as well as the chance to go spinning out of control if it takes a wound). It will struggle against extremely high volume S5 and S6 attack, but a low number, heavily armored units are pretty much fucked if it charges them. As such, enemy war machines will want to shoot at it but, being the clever rat that you are, you know you have scarier rare choices liiiiike...

Building Your Army[edit]

Buying Your Army[edit]

Protip: if you are ok with modeling, do it. You'll save a lot of bucks, because you can do almost everything with Clanrats, Stormvermins, and Rat Ogres boxes, some scraps, and green stuff. Yes, it's still expensive, but what the hell did you expect from an army that fields more than 150 models at 1000 points?

Island of Blood is a great way to start up your Skaven clan mainly because if you are interested in Skaven you also probably have an ultrasmurf fanboy (or Eldar nut) that wants to try out Fantasy battles but wants an army to auto-win with. Buy two boxes, sell the spare rulebook and templates and keep the miniatures: you get a great starter for the Skaven army and some money back. (Needless to say use the elves as slaves) Seriously though you get a good start on the multitude of clanrats/slaves and some pretty awesome looking weapon teams and heroes. The battalion is a decent buy but only if you are planning on running with plague monks. Otherwise its cheaper to buy Island of blood for what your getting. Be warned, you only get 20 hand weapons per 40 clanrats in Island of Blood, so if you plan on not using spears, you'll have to buy some bits, do some conversions, or have retarded mixed units.

Also, don't debate about it just buy the DOOMWHEEL. NO I DON'T CARE IF YOU WON'T USE IT!! You'll want it! Its allure is too strong. Fantastic model too so just give in to the Great Horned Rat and get one... it will please him.

Army Composition[edit]

If you haven't gathered: Skaven are a horde army so you are going to need some big blocks of clanrats and slaves to absorb the enemy's hordes and elite units such as rat ogres, DOOMWHEELS, plague monks, and adorable abominations on the flanks to RIP AND TEAR! The nice thing with Skaven is that even the worst units in the codex can find a use in almost any army. You come from Nurgulite Warriors of Chaos? Clan Pestilence go for it! Do you like fancy, absolutely unreliable tech? Here comes Clan Skyre! Get the DOOMWHEELS rollin'! You like muscles? Clan Moulder then! Rat Ogres aplenty and those adorable Abominations out there to spread the love! Or you can go full ninja with Clan Eshin and use loads of night and gutter runners! Are these all competitive? Probably not. But regardless of winning potential, they are fun to play.

Magic[edit]

Skaven Lore attributes are now al 6" debuffing auras, forcing you to get close to the enemy to get the most out of them, though skaven are better suited in not getting caught up in dangerous duels.

  • Ruin: The classic lore, although many spells have been taken by other clans, what you have left is more lighting then the lore of heavens. The musk of fear will low nearby enemy Leadership plus spells that Protection from arrows, double Attack form rat with spears, and attacks that pass through armour.
  • Plauge: Lore of Nurgle but for skaven. Makes enemies slower, more armour ignoring attacks, gives out poison, and a -1 toughness hex.
  • Stealth: "Wait!" I hear. "Where's Skitterleap? That instant escape button of all Skavenkind?" Well, now that Clan Eshin has its own wizards, they can afford their own exclusive lore. A Lore well suited in for the eshin style. Toxic rain will melt annoying metal bits on enemy weapons so your rats can shank them. The Signature Spell Skitterleap lets Infantry character get out of conundrums, Black Whirlwind, and Armour of Darkness gives protection, and Stickypaws and Swiftscamper are excellent for your flanking ninjas and mutants.

Tactics[edit]

Models. More models. MOAR! Seriously, this is a horde army. You will buy at least 200 rats, you will assemble, paint, and base them all, and you will love it. A good guideline is around 1 model per ten points, and at least 1 slave per 20 points. Aim for at least 2 Hordes of 40-60 Clanrats in any game with a high enough points limit. Adding more is not just fine but recommended. Use slaves, love slaves, field 3 blocks of 50 slaves and watch your opponent's deathstar never do anything but munch 300 points all game (while getting shot at!). Never, ever skimp on the protection for your general (heavy armour, shield, 4+ Ward). If he dies, your rats drop down to their (generally shitty) base Leadership.

Some armies (VC and Tomb Kings mostly) will ruin your day if you let them get into a grind-fest. Flank them hard and don't let them get into the stand-up fight that they want.

Also note, if fighting an OnG army with lots of goblins, or a VC army with a lot of zombies, your number advantage won't be as great as a good Skaven player should be comfortable with. Blowholes in 'em with warmachines and casters, and hope for the best.

Though it's a misconception that skaven HAVE to be a Horde army. Clanrats aren't the greatest warriors in the Old World, but have several small units of 20 just so you can take a weapon team with each can result in a bunch of added lols. Yes they will misfire more often than not. Yes they will blow themselves up, even sometimes in the opening salvo. But you didn't pick skaven for the reliability of the deranged warlock engineers mechanical contraptions. Tying a unit of Elite infantry down with a large block of slaves and unleashing flaming, poisonous wind, warp lead death without regard to who you actually kill? Golden!

If you do not fancy playing the horde game, skaven gunlines can be also quite devastating. 10 Jezzails can put a serious hurt on any monster out there without a ward save, and Gutter Runners with poison + slings are the bane of nearly everything (20-30 poisoned shots on a greater demon on turn 1 = 500 points less for your opponent).

You cannons are stupid-good tier, as they can either snipe monsters (mediocre due to the random strength) or obliterate large blocks of troops. Catapults are mainly for support, but against msu strategies they can force multiple LD test.

External Links[edit]

The Project's website


Warhammer Army Project Tactics Articles
General Tactics
Forces of Order
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