Many thanks to Games Workshop for providing us an advanced copy of Warcry: Hunter & Hunter for review. Cities of Sigmar returned to AoS with a new range created for AoS, rather than repurposed Warhammer Fantasy figures, and part of that range refresh is a unit that also serves as a Warcry warband – complete with dogs!
Abilities and Reactions
The abilities and reactions for Wildercorps Hunters involve generating extra attack, move and disengage actions, removing actions from enemy models or causing a bit of extra damage.
The Wildercorps reaction, Smart Step Backwards, allows a model that has taken been allocated damage from a melee attack action to take a bonus disengage action. This basically gets you out of combat hopefully before you get murdered.
Double – Death Grip – Can only be used by the Trailhounds. After the fighters next melee attack action, if they score a hit then the target model loses one action. If it has already activated, or has no actions left to lose, it takes three points of damage instead. I don’t need to tell you how good this is for shutting down key enemy models, or piling into a key model and doing even more damage. Against low model count forces, or where your opponent has tied up a lot of points in a monster or big hero, this is really useful.
Double – Hunting Pack – Useable by every model except Trailhounds (but the target can be Trailhounds). Target a friendly model with the Wildercorps Faction runemark within 2″ of this model, it may make a bonus attack action on an enemy within 2″ of the activating model. This is a free attack (either ranged or melee) for a double, and while you can’t use this on the most damaging weapon in the faction, the Arbalest, due to it’s minimum range of 6″ a free attack action is a free attack action, and this pushes you towards having your models in groups supporting each other.
Double – Hunters Eye – Until the end of the models activation, add 1 to the normal and critical damage it inflicts. Useable by two out of three of the wardens and the leatherhides, and upping the damage on 2/4 weapons to 3/5 is pretty good.
Triple – Trailblazer’s Might – Until the end of the fighters activation it scores criticals in attack actions on a 5+. Only useable by the Trailblazers, both of which have a 4 dice str 3 2/4 attack (one ranged, one melee). It’ll likely get you another critical, but it’s not necessarily worth adding a wild dice to a double to get when there are some very good doubles you can use.
Triple – Kill! – Only useable by the Warden with Grizzled Trailhound. Pick a visible enemy fighter. They take three damage for each model with the Wildercorps Hunters and Beast runemark within 3″ of them. Incredibly good if you have dogpiled an enemy model with multiple Trailhounds, if you aren’t then Death Grip is a similar effect for a double (possibly better if they have actions to lose).
Quad – Regroup! – Each visible friendly fighter with the Wildercorp Hunters runemark within 6″ can make a bonus move or a bonus disengage action (you can mix these). This is great for running away or piling in to surround a target.
A cheap 20 wound hero available in three types – Double-Bitted Axe (3 dice str 4 2/4 but melee), Hunting Crossbow (worse melee attack but has a ranged attack) and Grizzled Trailhound (worse melee attack but has access to the Kill! triple ability). With move 4 and toughness 3 twenty wounds can go fast as there are a lot of things out there hitting you on threes and you aren’t super speedy. Double-Bitted Axe combined with the Hunter’s Eye ability gives a nice damage output but if your opponent is rocking Stormcast, Chaos Warriors or anything doing 4/8 damage I’d advise not to get too close if you’re going to be taking melee attacks back.
Two flavours are available, one with Hunting Crossbow (1/3 damage in melee or ranged) or Troggslayer Spear (2/4 melee damage, but it’s range 2). You’ve got access to the Hunter’s Eye ability to bump those to 2/4 and 3/5 respectively, but with toughness 3 and 12 wounds there is a reason these only cost 100 points whichever flavour you go for.
Again, available in two types – Duelling Sabre or Twin Crossbows. Able to use the Trailblazer’s Might ability to score criticals on a 5+, the Duelling Sabre has 4 dice Str 3 2/4 in melee and Twin Crossbows has 4 dice Str 3 1/3 at range. Again toughness 3 and 12 wounds, and cheaper than the Leatherhides by 10 points, giving you models that are reasonably cheap, able to hit at range and melee giving you options for how you want to engage.
Again two options, both with ranged and melee attacks, but one has a longer ranged bow and the other has better hand to hand. Again it’s personal preference. With ten wounds, they are only 75 points and don’t have a special ability tied to them, but they’re a solid choice to fill out the warband.
A 4/8 range 20 missile weapon packs a lot of punch, and you’ll want this model somewhere with decent visibility putting out two shots a turn. At 175 points it’s pricey, and with a move of 3 it’s slow, so get them set up somewhere early, if possible during deployment, in order to get as many shots as possible off.
The cuddly critters of the warband, you want a few of these as the Death Grip and Kill! abilities are keyed to them. They’ve got a move of 6 and they’re only 60 points, so they’ll be ranging out from the rest of your models with move 4 and pinning down enemies, Death Gripping them, claiming table quarters or objectives and generally being fast and expendable. Their melee attack with 2 dice str 3 2/3 is reasonable, but don’t bet on it to bring anything down unless you hit it in numbers (which is where the abilities come in).
Overview and Suggested allies
This is a horde team, and one where I’d actually suggest getting a separate box for additional options to allow you to stack up even more cheap chaff and hounds, and to have variant wardens.
The abilities and reaction get you out of trouble, but aren’t great at getting you into it. Melee may not be where you really want to be against a lot of teams, as toughness 3 on models with 6-12 wounds is not a recipe for keeping your fighters alive. Similarly a move of 4 on your human models means you’ll be outpaced by some other forces.
You have numbers, and the Death Grip ability is great for shutting down a key enemy model or monster, but softening up or even killing key enemy models with missile fire before putting your melee specialists (Leatherhide with a range 2 spear attacking outside a range 1 models engagement bubble for example, or a Trailblazer with Double-Bitted axe improved by Trailblazer’s Might) into the fray.
How you use your Trailhounds is key, as piling them into an activated model and Death Gripping them and then popping the Kill! ability next turn can just output a bunch of wounds without having to roll against toughness.
You’ll have a lot of models and a limited amount of abilities to pop a turn, making placement and planning more important, but the amount of ranged weapons the band have make it more forgiving. You can soften up opponents, chipping away at them with long ranged missile fire.
The Arbalester is a lot of points (17.5% of the whole warband) and you have to decide whether they’re worth taking instead of 2-3 other models.
For allies there’s a lot of order available, and Stormcast have a lot of big punchy heroes to give you high toughness and melee output, but this is another force where synergy from sticking with the faction pays off, and a lot of the options you can bring in will cost you 2-3 bodies and make you a lot less of a horde faction.
Standard non-Chaos humans come to Warcry, and they’ve brought the doggos. It’s a horde warband, as you’d expect of standard human type peeps rolling around in a setting where it seems everyone is some kind of monster or some big shiny doofus in gold armour. Enjoy them for what they are, a skirmishing warband that softens up their opponents with missile fire and then releases the hounds.
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