Coupled with the Battlescroll is the expected list of point changes along with it. It’s been a tough first half for the year. All of the tomes released so far are widely considered to have been beneficiaries of power creep, and severely need some tweaking. Many older armies also suffer from being left behind, not being able to keep up with the new stuff. Points changes won’t fix everything, but they can do something.
We won’t go over every little point change, since you can see them for yourself. We instead will focus on what will likely stand out for the faction, for good or for ill.
As an additional note, a pattern we recognized is there are a lot of 5 point adjustments. What we’re pretty sure is going on is that after experimenting with it last season, Games Workshop decided they didn’t like point costs being in multiples of 5 after all. So many units that end in 5s but are otherwise priced fine were brought up or down to make it a multiple of 10 again. So for the most part we skip over these because it’s redundant and generally not going to matter a lot.
Daughters of Khaine
This is going to make a particular kind of list happy. As point costs have gone up, Daughters of Khaine have had to make some cuts and many have chosen to just cut the fat. Focusing on just Blood Stalkers and Blood Sisters supporting big Morathi, because they were the most efficient models with minimal support necessary. The good news is those models didn’t go up, so those lists are fine.
Everything else did come down, there is a particular kind of build for Daughters of Khaine that involves stacking a unit of 20-30 witch aelves with every buff you can. The problem is the support pieces neccesary to make that work just costed too much, and those all came down. Witch Aelves and Sisters of Slaughter both down 10 points, and one of their buff pieces the Avatar of Khaine went down 20. The two Priests, Hag Queen and Slaughter Queen were seeing less use also went down 10. Hell even the 20 points of a Bloodwrack Shrine is nice for this kind of list. Altogether this is a massive cut for the kind of list that wants to go all in on witch aelf murder blenders.
The rest are mostly nice drops to less used units, but 20 points of Shadowstalkers will look tasty for Khailbron lists and the Bloodwrack Viper is back from an undeserved prison sentence.
Points increases. Because Fyreslayers were doing really well, apparently? Also, the only army to receive only increases without any decreases meaning many other armies are squeezing in more units. Battlesmiths and Hearthguard Berzerkers are up 10 points each to 160, and each Invocation has increased either 10 or 20 points. The Invocations do give an incredibly easy Grand Strategy to score, sure, but they’re not that strong for what they do compared to many endless spells. My army list (similar to many Fyreslayer lists) is now up 80 points, which means time for more Vulkite Berzerkers. Between the new hero and these increases on Hearthguard, Vulkite spam is looking more and more appealing and may well be what we see on tables for the next year.
The one positive note here is that the Oops-All-Grimwrath list is completely unaffected!
Some hefty decreases across the board and very much needed for the army. The Bloodthirsty Shiver unit of 3 coming down a total 60 points is the biggest drop here alongside Leviadons dropping 30. Leviadons are probably still too spendy but we’re getting there and they do a job that nothing else in the army does. Thralls coming down 10 is nice, it will feel less bad when they end up being used as chaff or it brings down the cost of the big bricks of them.
There’s exciting changes for the heroes with the King (and Volty, who is still too much) coming down as well as the Soulrender and Soulscryer. It would have been nice to see the Tidecaster come down again as well, especially with the new season, but you can’t have it all. Both flavours of Eidolon get points drops too, with the Aspect of the Storm coming down a chunky 20 points to 300 – whilst its buff is annoying to use, this is a model that can do a lot of work for 300 points. Finally, both flavours of eel have dropped another 10 points, they’ve dropped 25 points since release! At this point, with Morrsarr at 170 it’s time to go back and dig your eels out to at least have a go. A consistent problem with Deepkin has been getting enough bodies on the table with all the big expensive models – most builds will find they have saved enough to get that extra unit.
Not one person is going to be surprised: Thunderers went up in points, and not a small amount either, at 25 points more per 5 models. Other must-take heroes have gone up by 15 or 20 points each: the Admiral, Khemist, and Navigator. The one thing that may be surprising actually is that Arkanauts came down 10 points and none of the boats received an increase either. With Galletian Champions gone and foot heroes being targetable within 12” I can see an increase in Frigates with Skywardens or Endrinriggers being more popular. Arkanauts shouldn’t be ignored either as one of the cheapest battleline units in the game, with decent shooting and able to take objectives well with the right Code; units of 20 counting as 2 models on objectives and rallying on 4+ costing only 180 points is not bad!
Lots and lots of green for the Lumineth with the only increase being Teclis by a small 20 points, which will be easy to find with all of your other units getting so much cheaper! The surprising ones here are the Spirits of the Wind and Sevireth dropping 30 points each. With all these drops it’ll be interesting to see in the new season if Lumineth players start to lean into other units, especially with Look Out, Sir protecting foot heroes that much more than pre-Galletian Champions with no way around it any more.
For an army that only recently received their 3rd ed Tome I wasn’t sure if we’d see many points changes, but oh boy is this a long list and most things got cheaper too! Kroak has gone up 15 points, which considering the wizarding season we’re stepping into makes a lot of sense and notably takes him out of the points bracket where he can ally into other armies. Stegadons are notably down 40 points with the Chief version coming down 30. Skinks and Saurus Guard both went up a small amount of points but Saurus Warriors, a real anvil of a unit right now, actually got 20 points cheaper. A little surprising I think considering Seraphon seem to still be pretty strong over all, especially considering the new season of matched play we’re going into!
An army list with this many units is expected to see a long list of points changes whenever they come around, and this time is no different. Not a single points increase on this list, with units dropping from 10-30 points each including many heroes, the big named Dragons, and Dracothian Guard (no, not Fulminators). The Dais Arcanum at just 20 points becomes very easy to take if you have 20 points left at the end of a list now too.
More points drops! Kurnoth Hunters with greatswords drop a mighty 30 points and the Lady of Vines is down 40, making the two largest drops on the list. Spite Revenants are now a cheap 80 points making Outcasts lists more appealing. Overall, outside of treelord lists, Sylvaneth have needed a little help but this doesn’t really touch the bulk of the army; still nice to have but I don’t think it will be putting these units onto top tables.
Beasts of Chaos
Our favorite goats are mostly subject to the +5, -5 fun times here where GW moves units to an even number instead of odds. My biggest takeaway? Ungor raiders take a huge hit here, with a 13% increase. I definitely understand that they’re good in that they can shoot twice in one turn, and 13 points a model seems okay. Compared to Blissbarbs who are now 14.5 a model… man that’s tough. Blissbarbs average 8 wounds vs a 5+ save and Raiders average 7 vs 5+ on a turn when they shoot twice. Blissbarbs outrange them by 6”.
The Cockatrice going up to 120 may just take it out of a lot of lists. It’s weird to see Chaos Spawn go up, as I definitely thought it was Morghurite Spawn that were seeing a lot more use. Regular spawn are okay but 80 points? Not really even a filler now.
Dragon Ogors at 210 are interesting, but can they outmatch 6x Tzaangor Enlightened on Foot (TEoF)? Their damage output is about the same (not including the mortal wounds DOgors can put out) if you’re going first in a turn, and they both have very useful special rules. Are the D3 mortal wounds and extra 2” movement from DOgors worth the extra 30 points? I’m not so sure. DOgors have some utility with a Shaggoth but that boi is still 270 points, one of the most overcosted units in the game.
Speaking of TEoF, I don’t want to jinx it but they seem to have escaped the eye of James Workshop this time and are still very well costed for what they do. You’ll likely see competitive lists taking 6,12, or maybe even 18.
Blades of Khorne
For an army without wizards I was hoping to only see decreases, or no changes, not increases. Two of the Bloodthirsters have gotten a bit cheaper making them easier to fit into lists. Khorgoraths are now cheap at only 90 points each so a few of those could be fun to push across a table and watch your opponent struggle with target priority a little.
Most significant however is that Bloodletter based Khorne lists are largely unaffected by these changes and were already strong to begin with – nerfs to their competitive rivals has meant they may be positioned well into this wizard meta.
Disciples of Tzeentch
Shockingly kind to Tzeentch. Horrors and the Burning Sigil both went up 10 points, which arguably they deserve. Horrors are still going to be worth taking at least one of to tar pit, and the Burning Sigil is still one of the better Endless Spells for Arcane Armies (Even if it’s started to be replaced by the Simulacrum).
Mostly point cuts here, for stuff you just never see. Changeling, Jade Obelisk and all varieties of Flamers. The real odd duck is the Lord of Change going down 20 points, which I suspect is them not picking up that most bring Kairos and then summon in a Lord of Change on turn 1 or 2 with Guild of Summoners. Why pay for what you can get for free?
Hedonites of Slaanesh
The backbone of every Slaanesh list has been hit with 10 points increases: both mortal Seeker units, the Blissbarb archers and the Epitome also took a hit (+20). There are some minor changes to remove points that end in 5, and there have been some healthy points drops for many of the daemon units, chariots and the Slaaneshi twins receiving particularly substantial points drops. Slaangor at 130 are certainly more *interesting* than they were previously, but I’m not sure it’s enough to make them compelling inclusions. Overall, the egregious spam build has been hit hard enough they likely have to cut 11 blissbarb archers now, and the daemon side of the book has been opened up a little bit with some more points to play with. Weirdly, Twinsouls were untouched and have suffered with the loss of Galletian Veterans.
Skaven are a pretty bad army and took an amusingly big nerf in the GHB changes to endless spells so we do need to be seeing some pretty impressive points drops here. It’s a sea of green for the rats, but a lot of it feels like tinkering with 10 point adjustments here and there, alongside some more substantial points drops for the Bell, Furnace and Verminlords. You’ll be able to fit more in an army, which is a plus for an army with a survivability problem, but the problems with Skaven are fundamental enough that we can’t see a huge boost here.
Slaves to Darkness
There are a *ton* of points drops across the army here, with the exception of the ‘meta’ picks that were finding success like Varanguard, Chaos Knights and Chosen. I am curious who decided that Be’lakor needed to lose 15 points but ok.
Units that received substantial points drops include Chariots (now only 80 points), Legionnaires (90), Daemon Princes, Eternus, as well as both Manticore lords. I think there’s enough of a healthy drop in points across the range that there’s definitely going to be some interesting new lists to play with here – it’s just going to be a question of whether it ends up better than spamming Varanguard and Knights (I suspect not).
Nagash, The Supreme Lord of the Undead came down 65 points to a lean 900. Is he still overcosted? Probably. There are builds that will absolutely love this though, and until a new FEC book releases expect to start seeing more of Nagash and all of the ghouls.
30 point drops for the unridden monsters is nice and if you want to run the monster mash build, this hits a breakpoint where you can fit another Terrorgheist in. Some of the foot troops got some new warscrolls, in Dawnbringers so Games Workshop may be waiting to see how they shake out. Plus, the new Battletome can’t be that far off. Horrors & Ghouls in the meantime get to enjoy fun new warscrolls with a lot more damage capability at their original price point – tuck in!
Priced to move, everything must go! The Nighthaunt have really been struggling lately and they needed all the help they can get and this is a very generous boon to them. Most characters were given 10 and 20 point cuts. Olynder got a 30 point cut which might bring her into the realm of usability now, which is great news.
Krulghast, Spirit Torment and Bladegheist and Dreadscythe have remain untouched, naturally. They were the most popular units in Nighthaunt and at the very least they didn’t go up. Mymourn Banshees getting a 10 point cut is a surprise and a pleasant one at that. Chainrasps at a round 100 points makes them easier to digest as chaff for points.
I do scratch my head at the Kavalos Deathriders, who I think Games Workshop misunderstood that they were not being taken because they were good, but because they unlocked a very easy battle tactic. Not sure if that’s really a sin worth paying for. Boneshaper also went up, though I’d argue that wasn’t really fair, it mostly saw use because it was a Galetian Champ in an army that surprisingly lacks for good ones due to everything being named or mounted.
Katakros and Immortis Guard both went up 20 points, which is entirely fair and warranted. Surprising that they didn’t bring Necropolis Stalkers up, but since Immortis Guard are considered better by many, putting them on even ground may even be generous to them. The Bone-Tithe Shrieker also went up 10 points, which is probably fair.
Both Morghast getting a 20 point cut is very nice, and the Harvester got a pity 30 point drop to go with its recent nerf that probably still won’t help it see the table. I’d probably have dropped Mortek Guard too, as they’re the ones paying for it, but they remain untouched.
There are a lot of changes here – mostly small tweaks here and there or removing the 5 point increments on scrolls. It’s nice to see Zombies not copping the famous double nerf here, and just going up 5 given the main battlescroll changes to their abilities. There are large points increases for Belladamma and Torgillius, which will hit the infantry horde builds, and the Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon is up by 20 as are Black Knights. These latter changes along with the previous FAQ will hammer the Legion of Blood build quite hard – it will be interesting to see if all of these changes are too much, or if the army can maintain momentum at the top of the pile. You can still fit all of the pieces of the armies that have been doing well in, you just don’t get quite as much.
It’s not all red for the Gravelords and there’s some hefty drops in amongst it – Mortis Engines are down 20 and the unridden monsters are both down a lot. At 240 for a Terrorgheist I would be excited if Anvegorii wasn’t completely terrible. The Bloodseeker Palanquin came down 40 points, leaving it still enormously overcosted for a warscroll that just doesn’t do anything. The Vargskyr has come down to just 90 points and might see some play now as a cheeky single model with a 3d6 charge and decent attack profile.
You’re probably not gonna be shocked by anything here. If it’s a Trogg or Squig (including the Sneaky Snufflers) it probably went up 10-20 points. If it’s a spider, it went down 20 points or so. Probably not enough to make or break things on their own but Trogg and Squig lists may have to ween off a unit or two.
Skragrott and the Fungoid Cave-Shaman both went up 20 and 10 points respectively, which is fair given how absolutely terrifying the casting has been in Gitz. Cutting the cost of the endless spells seems like an apology, since most were taking them for free through the Trogg artefact.
Some other nice odds and ends are cuts to Moonclan and Snarlfang Riders. Moonclan Stabbas might see a bit more use now to capture objectives as intended.
Frostlord on Stonehorn and Stonehorn Beastriders both went up 20 and 10 points. I’m not sure this is actually fair to them, as it seems targetting the unit that just shows up the most in lists when they’re just a really solid unit. Beastriders aren’t even great, they just fulfill the role of battleline for “pure” Beastclaw Raiders.
Otherwise most things saw a cut, other than the “problem” units of ~6 months ago, Ironblasters and Gnoblars. This does balance things out a fair bit. It’s especially nice for foot Ogors to get a point cut, now that they can benefit greatly from the new coherency rule that makes sure they can all get into combat. Arguably this makes the point cut even better.
Let’s start with the bad – Gitz favorite ally the Sloggoth went up 20, which isn’t of consequence for Kruleboyz players because they never took it anyway. Bonesplitterz are conspicuously absent altogether here, which is confusing considering they’re one of the game’s worst performing factions at the moment.
Onto positives, Kruleboyz received points drops for every hero bar the Shaman, Sludgeraker and Mirebrute, which is great… but the army only has six hero slots so there’s a limit to how much impact this’ll have. The Killbow has also gone down to 80 points, making it a cheeky alternative to hobgrots if you have 80 points left over. All told with the new battle tactic and these changes they’re certainly recharged for the new season, it just remains to be seen if it’s enough.
Ironjawz are loving life, with drops to Brutes (-10), Gordrakk (-40) and the generic Maw-krusha (-30). The real winners however are Big Waaagh, who can slide Gobsprakk into an IJ dominated list, benefit from two fantastic battle tactics AND these meaty points drops.
Sons of Behemat
Everything got a cut here, except the Warstomper who was already the cheapest anyway. This opens up a lot more flexibility in the perpetual balancing act that is the Mega-Gargants. Possible the most interesting is that Gatebreaker is finally down to a flat 500. 4 Gatebreaker list go?
Oh also all the Mercenaries got slashed again, but I doubt it’s still worth it.
I expected some more aggressive changes, especially given the state of certain armies. Particularly Seraphon, who are only going to become more powerful as we move into the new Season.
It’s likely that because of the new Generals Handbook Games Workshop might be staying their hand a bit, waiting to see how the new season shakes out before making more aggressive changes. The General’s Handbook will stick around for a year, but we can expect balance changes in roughly 3 months. So it’s worth seeing where things might shake out before really going for the big cuts and hikes.
In the mean time, enjoy the new season in Andtor and we hope to keep publishing content as you fight across the snowy hellscape.