Competitive Innovations in the Mortal Realms – Krondspine Incarnate of the Meta

This week we’ve got three events to cover, including the previous list I thought had conquered the metagame (hint: It’s got Skeletor in it), and a challenger for the throne that I think is actually an even better list. The metagame has started to mature now and we’ve got a hierarchy of armies forming, you might even be tempted to call it a ‘tier list’ and say such despicable things as ‘Bonesplittaz are bad’ and ‘Wait, Sons of Behemat exist?’. The quality of lists is still improving as people begin to optimise what their armies are capable of, as well as tailor said lists to better deal with the current season’s Battleplans and Battle Tactics. Let’s crack on.

Death & Riches

48-player, 5-round Grand Tournament in Victoria Australia on August 05 2023. All the lists for this event can be found in Stats & Ladders.

Daniel Trotter – Flesh-eater Courts (Morgaunt) Daniel's Army List - Click to Expand

– Army Faction: Flesh-eater Courts

– Subfaction: Morgaunt

– Grand Strategy: Overshadow

– Triumph: Inspired

LEADERS

Abhorrant Archregent (240)*

– Spells: Hoarfrost

Abhorrant Ghoul King (170)*

– General

– Command Traits: Savage Chivalry

– Artefacts of Power: Decrepit Coronet

– Spells: Hoarfrost

Nagash (900)**

BATTLELINE

Crypt Ghouls (240)**

– Crypt Ghast

Crypt Ghouls (240)**

– Crypt Ghast

Crypt Ghouls (80)**

ENDLESS SPELLS & INVOCATIONS

1 x Chalice of Ushoran (50)

1 x Umbral Spellportal (80)

CORE BATTALIONS

*Andtorian Acolytes

**Battle Regiment

TOTAL POINTS: 2000/2000

vs

Joel Graham – Seraphon (Fangs of Sotek) Joel's List - Click to Expand

Allegiance: Seraphon

– Constellation: Fangs of Sotek (3 redeploys, 2 skink units free)

– Grand Strategy: Spellcasting Savant (General lives)

– Triumphs: Inspired (+1 to wound)

Lord Kroak (410)*

Skink Starseer (150)**

– Lore of Primal Frost: Merciless Blizzard (4d6 mortals)

– Spell: Speed of Huanchi (skink unit hero phase move)

Saurus Astrolith Bearer (140)*

Slann Starmaster (275)**

– General

– Command Trait: Lord of Celestial Resonance (2 ccp for cast/dispel/unbind)

– Spell: Drain Magic (-1 unbind boardwide, herophase dispels)

– Lore of Primal Frost: Rupture (Turn E.S. or incarnate wild)

Terradon Chief (100)**

– Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)

10 x Skinks (90)*

– Boltspitters & Moonstone Clubs

5 x Saurus Guard (140)*

5 x Raptadon Chargers (150)*

Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (480)*

– Allies

Malevolent Maelstrom (30)

Suffocating Gravetide (30)

*Battle Regiment

**Command Entourage – Magnificent

Spell

RealmShaper Engine

Total: 1995 / 2000

Reinforced Units: 0 / 4

Allies: 480 / 400

Wounds: 75

Drops: 4

Thoughts

It’s a clash of summoning here in the finals, with Nagash here to abuse the legality of his unit replacement rule technically stacking with the Morgaunt replacement command ability to allow a unit that’s destroyed to uhh… split into two units. But that’s not the only summoning, as the Archregent will bring on 20 Beastflayers (the Ghoul King another 10 on top of that). This tidal wave of ghouls that can grow in size as the game goes on recently did well in the hands of Ritchie McAlley, and it’s back again to take on the latest hot mess to hit the metagame.

What mess? Well Starborne Seraphon rupturing it’s own Incarnate and feeding it power pellets Malevolent Maelstroms to keep it at level 3. The interaction works because Rupturing the Incarnate makes it go Wild, meaning it sees friendly models as enemy models, which means it can use it’s monstrous rampage to consume endless spells cast by the Slanns chilling in the back of the castle. So we have an invincible Incarnate… or do we? Both things require the spells to be successfully cast, and Nagash is one of the few to be able to stare down Kroak and give him a run for his money in the spell domination department. Luckily Joel has a pretty good fallback plan, which is to leverage what spells he does cast and unbind to generate lots of summoning points for more Saurus Guard, Skinks or to blow up cosmic nodes. It’s a close one and I would have loved to see how it played out.

Result

Seraphon Victory – 20-0

1st Place – Joel Graham – Fangs of Sotek

Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur. Credit: Michael O “mugginns”

List

See Showdown

Thoughts

I guess the initial thoughts I had when seeing this list was a long drawn out exhale of breath you might categorise as a sigh? The Incarnate had gone into something of a hibernation period after the last round of nerfs took it from auto-include into the ‘ehhh, not really worth the hassle’ territory. Then along came Andtor and the Rupture spell, it’s utility outlined above. Giving Seraphon access to a reliable tanky unit that can shut off retreats and pin their opponent into a section of the board synergises really well with what this summoning list wants to do. The spellcasting engine of Kroak + Slann + Emotional support hangers-on sits back all the way back in Joel’s deployment zone, shooting spells off into the air to generate summoning points while still being able to shut down their opponents spells thanks to global unbinds.

Being able to be given first turn with the army out of unbind range, cast all its spells without using any primal dice and then dump all their primal dice into shutting down their opponent’s spells is going to be enough to severely hamper some armies, but the army also gets summoning points for shutting down spells (2 for each in fact thanks to the Slann’s command trait if that frog unbinds them specifically), meaning often time the correct thing to do is simply… not cast spells.

What you see here is the new face of the metagame, capable of holding down Nagash FEC with all its broken rules interactions and come out the other side with a dominant finish. Armies can tech to be able to beat a turn 1 Wild Incarnate, or beat the summoning Starborne engine… most armies in the game are incapable of stopping both. It’s 2023 and Seraphon are back on top baby. Well done Joel.

2nd Place – Alexander Krohn – Guild of Summoners

Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur. Credit: Michael O “mugginns”

List

Alexander's list - click to expand

– Army Faction: Disciples of Tzeentch

– Subfaction: Guild of Summoners

– Grand Strategy: Master of Destiny

– Triumph: Inspired

LEADERS

Fluxmaster (180)

– Artefacts of Power: The Eternal Shroud

– Spells: Rupture

Kairos Fateweaver (440)*

Magister on Disc of Tzeentch (160)*

– General

– Command Traits: Arcane Sacrifice

– Spells: Arcane Suggestion

– Bonding: Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur

Curseling (200)*

– Spells: Merciless Blizzard

BATTLELINE

Kairic Acolytes (120)*

– Kairic Adept

– Cursed Blade and Arcanite Shield

– Scroll of the Dark Arts

– Vulcharc

– 3 x Cursed Glaive and Arcanite Shield

Kairic Acolytes (120)*

– Kairic Adept

– Cursed Blade and Arcanite Shield

– Scroll of the Dark Arts

– Vulcharc

– 3 x Cursed Glaive and Arcanite Shield

Kairic Acolytes (120)*

– Kairic Adept

– Cursed Blade and Arcanite Shield

– Scroll of the Dark Arts

– Vulcharc

– 3 x Cursed Glaive and Arcanite Shield

BEHEMOTH

Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (480)*

ENDLESS SPELLS & INVOCATIONS

1 x Daemonic Simulacrum (70)

1 x Umbral Spellportal (80)

CORE BATTALIONS

*Battle Regiment

TOTAL POINTS: 1970/2000

Thoughts

This list works in a very similar manner to the Seraphon version, only it feeds the spell portal to the Incarnate instead and swaps out the ‘engine’ from summoning lizards to summoning large aggressive chickens. Its got better access to debuffs like Arcane Suggestion to shut off command ability use, but it can’t unbind at unlimited range so it has to be a bit more proactive on the board.

One of the advantages this list does have is that thanks to Destiny Dice not being able to play nice with Primal Dice, the army can skip the Acolytes battalion and be a true one drop, which gives it priority in a lot more matchups which can be pivotal on certain battleplans. I don’t think it’s quite as strong as the Seraphon version, but it has its advantages and it’s a top contender.

Best of the Rest

The rest of the top 8 all went 4-1 (with exception of 8th) and were:

3rd – Dalton Copeland – Big Waaagh!: A big result posted by the Orruks here, with Dalton bringing a blend of Ironjawz, Gobsprakk and a Wurgogg to an impressive podium finish. 25 Ardboyz, 10 Brutes and 6 Gore Gruntas is a lot to deal with, add on top the Wurgogg and fantastic battle tactic options and they’re well positioned this season. (Want to read more about them? Check out last weeks Start Competing)

4th – Ryan Chamley – Morathi & The Bow Snakes: Yes yes its technically Khailebron, but I say that phrase and you immediately know the score. 15 Bows and 10 Spears with some Heartrenders for an easy battle tactic – its a classic but its still going strong.

5th – Michael Clarke – Grinnin’ Blades: What the fuck? Michael out here with a big statement! Gobsprakk and the Acolyte battalion going together like cheese and wine here to help shut down spells to throw out D6 mortals, a fresh set of points drops and 12 Boltboyz that are infuriatingly difficult for a lot of armies to be able to actually reach and kill thanks to the subfaction bonus.

6th – David Sulava – Big Waaagh!: You can tell this event was in australia because there’s a load of players who love their destruction armies. This list runs a Maw-krusha and Gobsprakk, minimal battleline and 9 Pigs for deadly charge capabilities.

7th – Kieren Coates – Skaven: Lot’s of clanrats, plague censer bearers and even an Incarnate (running Rupture and an endless spell to feed to it of course).

8th – Zak Rockman – Big Waaagh! (3-1-1): No Gobsprakk and no Brutes – no problem! This list runs 6 Boltboyz and 12 Pigs!

The Northern Island AoS GT

40-player, 5-round Grand Tournament in Belfast, Northern Island on August 05 2023. All the lists for this event can be found in Stats & Ladders.

Solomon Morrow – Soulblight Gravelords (Legion of Night) Solomon's Army List - Click to Expand

Allegiance: Soulblight Gravelords

– Subfaction: Legion of Night

– Grand Strategy: Lust for Domination

– Triumphs: Inspired

Mannfred von Carstein, Mortarch of Night (380)

– Lore of the Deathmages: Waste Away

Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon (460)*

– Deathlance

– Lore of the Vampires: Spirit Gale

Vampire Lord (140)**

– General

– Command Trait: Shaman of the Chilled Lands

– Artefact: Morbheg’s Claw

– Lore of the Vampires: Spirit Gale

Necromancer (100)**

– Lore of Primal Frost: Hoarfrost

20 x Deadwalker Zombies (120)*

20 x Deadwalker Zombies (120)*

10 x Dire Wolves (140)*

10 x Dire Wolves (140)*

20 x Grave Guard (300)*

– Great Wight Blades

– Reinforced x 1

Suffocating Gravetide (30)

Malevolent Maelstrom (30)

*Battle Regiment

**Andtorian Acolytes

Total: 1960 / 2000

Reinforced Units: 1 / 4

Allies: 0 / 400

Wounds: 140

Drops: 4

vs

Kenneth Chambers – Blades of Khorne (Reapers of Vengeance) Kenneth's Army List - Click to Expand

– Army Faction: Blades of Khorne

– Subfaction: Reapers of Vengeance

– Grand Strategy: Overshadow

– Triumph: Bloodthirsty

LEADERS

Bloodmaster (110)*

– Prayers: Bronzed Flesh, Witchbane Curse

– Nullstone Adornments: Hand-carved Nullstone Icon

Skarr Bloodwrath (110)*

Bloodthirster of Insensate Rage (310)*

– Artefacts of Power: Ar’gath, the King of Blades

Slaughterpriest (110)**

– General

– Command Traits: High-priest of Khorne

– Hackblade and Wrath-hammer

– Prayers: Blood Sacrifice, Killer Instinct

Slaughterpriest (110)**

– Bloodbathed Axe

– Prayers: Bloodbind, Unholy Flames

– Nullstone Adornments: Pouch of Nulldust

Skarbrand (380)**

BATTLELINE

Bloodreavers (80)*

– Blood Chieftain

– Icon Bearer

– Hornblower

– Reaver Blades

Bloodreavers (80)*

– Blood Chieftain

– Icon Bearer

– Hornblower

– Reaver Blades

Flesh Hounds (100)**

– Gore Hound

– Burning Roar

Claws of Karanak (100)**

ARTILLERY

Skull Cannon (140)

Skull Cannon (140)

OTHER

Magore’s Fiends (140)

ENDLESS SPELLS & INVOCATIONS

1 x Hexgorger Skulls (50)

TERRAIN

1 x Skull Altar (0)

CORE BATTALIONS

*Warlord

**Warlord

TOTAL POINTS: 1960/2000

Thoughts

Since the nerfing of Neferata and her Legion, there’s been a variety of different builds that have risen to stand alongside the Legion of Blood, all very strong and all capable of doing well at tournaments. Night wants to use movement shenanigans and counter charges to set up traps and cause a ton of damage with Mannfred fighting first on your opponent’s turn. Their heroic action lets them teleport a Vampire hero, and can be used on either turn.. meaning you can put Mannfred in front of their army turn 1 if you wanted to and charge instead of a redeploy if they dared to get in his face. Solomon has brought enough bodies that can act as board control with these counter charges, or be outright hammers with a little bit of support.

Facing off against it is a very top heavy Khorne list that brings a bunch of MSU units to die and generate blood tithe, the typical Bloodbound suite of mortal priests just looking to have a good time and support their buddies Skarrbrand and a shut off ward BT. There’s no Unfettered Fury BT here for a -1 to hit bubble and longer charges, it’s the Boomthirster. How does the Boomthirster work? Well if you roll 6s on his attack he causes a big mortal wound boom – not just to the unit he’s fighting, but each enemy unit within 8″ of him. How boomy? 4 mortal wounds, with 5 attacks on the top fighting bracket. It’s an aggressive and swingy unit that will almost certainly die very quickly, but may kill half of Kenneth’s opponent in the process. There’s a few skull cannons here too which are quietly one of the better artillery units in the game, but Skarrbrand and the Boomthirster are the focus of this list.

As for how they matchup, it’s all going to depend on how well Solomon can block travel lanes for the Bloodthirsters. If he can push forward dire wolves and zombies and essentially create buffers of bodies that hold them back, it doesn’t bode well for Khorne as the VLOZD and Mannfred are more than capable of easily killing both bloodthirsters in a single turn. On the other hand, if Kenneth can use Murderlust and savvy positioning/lucky charges to get beyond those initial screens and into the heart of the army and roll a few sixes? Oo baby we got a bloodbath going.

Result

Legion of Night Victory – 26-13

1st Place – Solomon Morrow – Legion of Night

Mannfred von Carstein, Mortarch of Night. Credit: Mike ‘Ellarr’ Chadderton

List

See showdown

Thoughts

Covered a fair amount in the showdown so let’s touch on what goes beyond simply ‘Mannfred is a prick’. The army is capable of gaining a +2 to cast bonus from Morbheg’s Claw for all the wizards, allowing it to power out the more potent versions of Spirit Gale, Waste Away and Mannfred’s warscroll spell that deals AOE damage. As Mannfred can teleport with a heroic action at the beginning of the hero phase, you can create a situation where you spirit gale and potentially do up to 2 mortal wounds to every unit they have on the table, then Mannfred can do D3 mortal wounds (on a 3+ each time) to a big cluster of units. This is a ton of pressure for very little effort that can immediately create battleshock/hero death issues for more fragile bravery armies like those in Grand Alliance: Destruction.

While it’s chaff isn’t quite as good as they would be in Vyrkos, and it’s Vampires aren’t as deadly as they are in Legion of Blood, it’s movement shenanigans are a nightmare for your opponent to deal with between Mannfred charging if your opponent gets within 9″ of him and another unit getting to charge in your turn to potentially shut down charge lanes or turn trading situations into messed up gang fights. Counter charge abilities don’t jump off the page as incredibly powerful but once you play against it you see just how good it is. Consider that over the course of a five round tournament, you have to make a lot of important decisions in a short space of time and in high pressure situations too. Club Night for a casual game you can probably happily play around the counter charge/movement stuff and be okay, but round 3 on a saturday when the event hall is hot, you’re hungry and tired from leaning over a table all day? Mistakes happen. Mannfred happens. Well done Solomon.

Best of the Rest

The rest of the top 8 all went 4-1 and were:

2nd – Emmet McNickle – Skaven: A mix of stuff here – there’s a 4 Rat Ogor + Master Moulder package for a cheapish melee hammer that somewhat consistently replaces itself, 2 Warp Lightning Cannons for ranged damage, Slynk’s warband for a deep strikable melee threat, chaff to hold the board and a Verminlord Deceiver for a roaming melee powerhouse powermouse.

3rd – David McCarthy – Guild of Summoners: This chicken factory is quite similar to what we’ve seen in the previous season with a Thaumaturge, Kairos and 6 Enlightened on Discs – a benefit of not running an Incarnate means more points to spend on other toys.

4th – David Kane – Legion of Blood: Noferata here! She’s on holiday, instead it’s the standard ‘shell’ of a VLOZD, VL and Necro supplemented by a Wight King on steed to make the 3*5 Black Knights he’s running more consistent and deadly when charging. Still loads of points for 60 Zombies and 20 Grave Guard though because man is the battleline in this army cheap as chips. Lovely.

5th – Stephen Mitchell – Knights of the Empty Throne: Oh hey the Varanguard lists are back! KOTET means 12 Varanguard and 10 Chaos Knights with the Nurgle banner, supplemented by some Corvus Cabal and a few CSL in a 1 drop. The only thing this list has taken advantage of in the new season in fact is Hoarfrost on one of the CSL (handy to make the Knights hit on 2s).

6th – Kristoffer Mallberg – Legion of Blood: A more typical Legion of Blood list that runs much the same stuff as it did last season, dropping a hammer unit to accommodate points hikes in the last update and adding in some Fell Bats to help deal with the more spread out objectives we’re seeing a lot of in this season’s set of Battleplans.

7th – Kenneth Chambers – Reapers of Vengeance: See showdown

8th – Richard Flood – Dracothion’s Tail: Who needs Fangs of Sotek! Not Richard, who has the standard spellcasting core we’ve seen in the Incarnate list but without the Incarnate, instead opting for some Hunters of Huanchi, some Raptadons, an Ark of Sotek Bastiladon (amazing value tank for its points) and even some cheeky Saurus Warriors. Not as strong a build but probably a lot less likely to get nerfed next battlescroll!

Leeds AoS GT

33-player, 5-round Grand Tournament in England GB on August 05 2023. All the lists for this event can be found in Best Coast Pairings.

Matthew Gouldesbrough – Seraphon (Fangs of Sotek) Matthew's Army List - Click to Expand

Allegiance: Seraphon
– Constellation: Fangs of Sotek
– Grand Strategy: Spellcasting Savant
– Triumphs: Inspired

Leaders
Relic Priest Palp’a Ti’ne (410)**
Lord Kroak
Lord Va D’er (275)**
Slann Starmaster
– General
– Command Trait: Lord of Celestial Resonance
– Artefact: Spacefolder’s Stave
– Lore of Primal Frost: Rupture
Astrolith Bearer Ky’lo Ren (140)*
Saurus Astrolith Bearer
Admiral Tarkin (110)**
Ripperdactyl Chief
– Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)

Battleline
5 x Saurus Guard (140)*
10 x Skinks (90)*
– Boltspitters Celestite Daggers & Star Bucklers
10 x Skinks (90)*
– Boltspitters Celestite Daggers & Star Bucklers

Behemoths
Bastiladon with Ark of Sotek (180)*
THAT’S NO MOON… (480)
Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur
– Allies

Endless Spells & Invocations
“Photon Torpedos”
Malevolent Maelstrom (30)
“Death Star Laser”
Aethervoid Pendulum (40)

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment
**Command Entourage – Magnificent

Total: 1985 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 0 / 4
Allies: 480 / 400
Wounds: 81
Drops: 5

vs

Mike Stewart – Seraphon (Fangs of Sotek) Mike's Army List - Click to Expand

Army Faction: Seraphon
– Army Type: Starborne
– Army Subfaction: Fangs of Sotek
– Grand Strategy: Spellcasting Savant
– Triumphs: Indomitable

LEADER

1 x Slann Starmaster (275)*
– General
– Command Traits: Lord of Celestial Resonance
– Spells: Rupture, Comet’s Call
– Bonding: Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur

1 x Lord Kroak (410)**

1 x Skink Starseer (150)**
– Spells: Merciless Blizzard, Hoarfrost

1 x Skink Starseer (150)**
– Spells: Cosmic Crush, Merciless Blizzard

1 x Saurus Astrolith Bearer (140)*
– Artefacts: Arcane Tome

BATTLELINE

10 x Skinks (90)
– Skink Alpha
– Boltspitter
– Celestite Dagger and Star-buckler

10 x Skinks (90)
– Skink Alpha
– Boltspitter
– Celestite Dagger and Star-buckler

5 x Saurus Guard (140)**
– Saurus Guard Alpha
– Icon Bearer
– War-drummer

BEHEMOTH

1 x Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (480)

ENDLESS SPELL

1 x Malevolent Maelstrom (30)
1 x Suffocating Gravetide (30)

CORE BATTALIONS:

*Andtorian Acolytes
**Warlord – Extra Spell Enhancement

TOTAL POINTS: (1985/2000)
Drops: 9

Thoughts

Let’s not twist words here – both of these players are friends and have run largely the same list, they are in fact quite similar to the tournament winning list at the top of this article. What’s different is the key in the matchup. Matthew has a Ripperdactyl chief with an Arcane Tome as a cheap ‘wizard’ to cast a spell through, dump mortal wounds through blowing up cosmic nodes or even just do cheeky back caps of opponent’s objectives later on in the game. He’s also running a Bastiladon that acts as a) a source of roar, b) an annoying tank that’s very difficult to kill with a 6+(potentially 5+ with some investment) ward and a 2+ base save that doesn’t degrade in the new book. Lastly, he’s not running Acolytes so he gets to be a lower drop army.

Mike on the other hand has brought two Starseers for their insanely efficient benefits they provide (2 casts each mean more celestial points), ability to hand out 5+ wards once per game like candy. He’s skipped Spacefolders stave so he can use his extra enhancement on a second spell for all these wizards, giving him access to Blizzard on his Starseers as well as Hoarfrost – both extremely potent tools.

Ultimately Mike’s is the stronger variant in the mirror thanks to its greater focus on spellcasting (a Bastiladon isn’t going to impress anyone when there’s mortal wounds flying in every direction), which may have been the deciding factor.

Result

Seraphon Victory (Mike Stewart) – 16-4

1st Place – Mike Stewart – Fangs of Sotek

Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur. Credit: Michael O “mugginns”

List

See showdown

Thoughts

Yes I’ll admit I’m deliberately using the same Incarnate picture repeatedly to prove a point – the Incarnate (with an Endless spell and Rupture) is on top of the metagame right now. This list is largely the same as Joel’s, with the minor difference of one unit of Raptadon’s getting downgraded to Skinks and the Terradon chief upgraded to a star seer and some change-up of battalions.

I’ll take this space to instead touch on a conversation that was happening around the Seraphon battletome’s release, and look back on it with the benefit of hindsight. When the book first came out, there was a frenzied discussion about the bonkers damage output of Kroak casting Celestial Deliverance repeatedly through a Skink Wizard or the Trogladon. It was powerful and was nerfed in it’s FAQ to only once per turn, but that wasn’t really the focus of the conversation.

Before Andtor came along, I noticed that competitive types didn’t really think that Starborne was the best path, instead suggesting Coalesced was going to be more successful. Why? Well because the Starborne list relied so heavily on spells for damage output, the reasoning went that the list would keel over dead to Null Myriad OBR lists (which were becoming very popular and winning tournaments), as well as (to a much lesser extent) Khorne lists, who could somewhat unreliably ignore the spell effects and generate Blood Tithe in the process. The reason that Starborne Seraphon are actually dominating is (and we’ve been talking about this all article) the Incarnate when combined with the Rupture spell. Suddenly, the Seraphon player has a chess piece the Null Myriad army has a very difficult time of actually killing. With that matchup flipped, it became a whole different story – all thanks to Andtor.

Incidentally, I played Mike Stewart at this event and he was a great opponent and really deserved this win with his play. Well done Mike.

The Best of the Rest

There were 5 other players on a 4-1 record or better, they were:

2nd Place – Peter Twigg – Reapers of Vengeance (4-1-0): Peter posts another impressive podium finish (going technically undefeated) with this Skarbrand/Unfettered Fury BT list that runs two units of Skullcrushers for pinning/anvil purposes and 5 separate units of 5 Flesh Hounds for extra unbinds and those all important cavalry base screens.

3rd Place – Matthew Gouldesbrough – Fangs of Sotek: See showdown

4th Place – Andrew Hughes – Legion of Night: With Nagash back on everyone’s radar, Andrew pilots this list to a stirring finish with Nagash and 60 counter-charging zombies, chilling with a 5+ ward thanks to Nagash and just being an absolute nuisance to deal with, helping Andrew get ahead on primary scoring.

5th Place – Alex Tubb – Null Myriad: Alex is a clubmate of mine and has been absolutely crushing it lately with this optimised build of OBR that still works very effectively even post nerf. By dropping Arkhan and the endless spell, Tubb can afford two Mortisans (and thus fit in a 1 drop), and two units of Morghasts while still bringing along the 6 Immortis Guard as standard, some Stalkers and Deathriders for a battle tactic/pinning.

6th Place – Me! – Big Waaagh!: Yup lil ol’ me, I brought a BW list with more bodies than typical (25 Ardboyz, 10 Brutes and 6 Pigs) that lost only to the eventual winner Mike Stewart. I even won Best Sporting which made my day, week and probably will make my month (I think sportsmanship is the most important aspect of the hobby). Rather than continue to toot my own horn, if you want a detailed breakdown of the exact list and my thought process, you can read it near the bottom of my Start Competing for BW article.

Wrap Up

That’s it! I went into the weekend suspecting that Unrelenting Blizzard needed a nerf (and I think it probably still does, I did 21 Mortal Wounds to Neferata with a 100 point wizard and that seems a little crazy), but I’ve come out of the weekend having played both the Tzeentch Incarnate list and the Seraphon Incarnate list very impressed but troubled. It’s both consistent and powerful with the addition of the Rupture combo, but somewhat alarmed that it may be over-tuned and may end up suffocating the top of the metagame with lists essentially all trying to do this one thing.

Many armies simply aren’t set up well to deal with an Incarnate that can level up once a turn in a way that’s difficult to stop, as delevelling an Incarnate usually means committing resources to it that the player often doesn’t get back. If John loses a 180 point unit taking Jane’s Incarnate from level 3 to 2, and then Jane throws a Maelstrom nearby to level it back up to 3, requiring only to roll a 4 on two dice (provided it’s level 2)… that will quickly leave John feeling sad, heading to the bar for a drink and complaining on twitter that evening, ha! Until next week.