Competitive Innovations in the Mortal Realms: March 23, 2022

After a bit of a lull last week with only two events, we’re back with another weekend jam-packed with big events, just in time to get a final view of the meta before Fyreslayers and Idoneth Deepkin join, with the later likely to have a bigger impact. This is also a week where we can really see the impact of the Beasts of Chaos Tome Celestial rules, and whether that faction is a real top contender or merely “pretty good” following their updates. In addition, the GW Matched Play Event will give us an early indication of the latest Battlescroll update and what it might have meant for the metagame.

GW Matched Play Event

A two-day, five-round event held at Warhammer World in Nottingham, England. You can find lists for this event in Best Coast Pairings

Martin Morrin – Stormcast Eternals – First Place

Instagram: aelvenpainter

Martin's List - Click to expand

Allegiance: Stormcast Eternals
– Stormhost: Hammers of Sigmar (Scions of the Storm)
– Grand Strategy: Hold the Line
– Triumphs: Inspired

Leaders
Knight-Draconis (300)*
– General
– Command Trait: Master of Magic
– Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)
– Mount Trait: Thunderous Presence
– Universal Spell Lore: Flaming Weapon
Lord-Commander Bastian Carthalos (300)*

Battleline
5 x Liberators (115)*
– Heavens-wrought Weapon and Shield
– 1x Grandweapons
5 x Liberators (115)*
– Heavens-wrought Weapon and Shield
– 1x Grandweapons
4 x Stormdrake Guard (680)*
– Drakerider’s Lance
– Reinforced x 1

Units
6 x Vanguard-Raptors with Longstrike Crossbows (480)*
– Reinforced x 1

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment

Additional Enhancements
Holy Command: Thunderbolt Volley

Total: 1990 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 2 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 87
Drops: 1

Notable Features

  • This is a list we’ve seen over and over, and we can see it takes one look at the battlescroll update and laughs, bringing no fewer than 4 points worth of priority targets.

Why it’s Interesting

It isn’t particularly? We’ve covered this list before, it combines the ranged strength of Longstrikes with the incredible everything of Stormdrakes, but what’s notable here is that the event used the updated Battlescroll we discussed last week. One of the concerns that many in the community felt is that this did little to swing heavily skewed matchups, as many armies can struggle to even kill many of the units affected by the change.

Put simply, the potential of extra victory points is nice, but unless it’s realised on the battlefield it’s not actually helping. Martin has an incredibly strong alpha strike here, and while I believe that this will make a difference in very close matchups, you also wonder if it’s enough to slow down such a powerful list.

The Rest of the Best

Laurie Huggett-Wilde – Lumineth Realm Lords – Second Place

Vanari Wardens Credit: Joshua Saunders

Laurie's List - Click to expand

Allegiance: Lumineth Realm-lords
– Great Nation: Alumnia
– Grand Strategy: Prized Sorcery
– Triumphs: Indomitable

Leaders
Archmage Teclis and Celennar, Spirit of Hysh (740)*
– General
Scinari Calligrave (115)*
– Artefact: Waystone
– Lore of Hysh: Total Eclipse

Battleline
30 x Vanari Auralan Wardens (435)*
– Lore of Hysh: Speed of Hysh
– Reinforced x 2
20 x Vanari Auralan Wardens (290)*
– Lore of Hysh: Speed of Hysh
– Reinforced x 1
10 x Vanari Auralan Wardens (145)*
– Lore of Hysh: Speed of Hysh
5 x Vanari Dawnriders (140)*
– Lore of Hysh: Speed of Hysh

Endless Spells & Invocations
Emerald Lifeswarm (60)
Umbral Spellportal (70)

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment

Total: 1995 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 3 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 91
Drops: 1

Notable Features

  • 60 Wardens reflect an interesting pivot for LRL lists
  • Teclis declares that he doesn’t care if he’s a priority target, he’ll carry this army anyway.

Why it’s Interesting

Sentinels have taken a beating recently, what with the price hike over the holidays and now becoming a priority target. Laurie has decided to take an entirely different approach to the many changes affecting LRL by simply leaning into an oft overlooked strength – the effectiveness of Wardens. Yes it’s 14.5 points per wound, but that’s often the case for elite elven bodies, and they can fight respectably against many of the games top armies in close combat simply because they’re annoyingly difficult to remove when supported: -1 to hit, can stack up to 3+ save without even using a CP, 5++ ward from Teclis being examples off the top of my head.

Add on the lifeswarm to keep them topped up and you can see what the plan is here – simply exist on objectives and use teleports/double moves to present favorable combat situations. Did you know Teclis has access to 18 spell lore spells? Yeah you probably did, but have you actually memorised all 18? No, let’s give you a quick refresher:

  • He can apply a board wide -1 to bravery to your opponent.
  • He can make a unit have to pass a bravery test every time it wants to move/charge/pile in.
  • He can melt low save units with Assault of Stone.
  • He can turn off the ability to use/receive CA for a unit.
  • He has a horde clearer spell too!

My point here is: Teclis is known for leaning on the particularly strong spells, but he’s also flexible enough that you can slap him in an army with very little else in the way of variety and still have all the tools it needs to succeed.

Bonus List Coverage Because I Write This Article And I Wanna

Dan Bradshaw – Beasts of Chaos – Fourth Place

Dan's List - Click to expand

Allegiance: Beasts of Chaos
– Greatfray: Allherd
– Grand Strategy: Hold the Line
– Triumphs: Inspired

Leaders
Dragon Ogor Shaggoth (155)
– General
– Command Trait: Dominator
– Lore of Dark Storms: Hailstorm
Dragon Ogor Shaggoth (155)*
– Artefact: Blade of the Desecrator
– Lore of Dark Storms: Sundering Blades

Battleline
6 x Dragon Ogors (250)**
– Reinforced x 1
3 x Dragon Ogors (125)*
3 x Dragon Ogors (125)*
3 x Dragon Ogors (125)*

Units
6 x Tzaangor Enlightened on Disc of Beasts of Chaos (360)**
– Reinforced x 1
6 x Tzaangor Enlightened on Disc of Beasts of Chaos (360)**
– Reinforced x 1
3 x Tzaangor Enlightened on Disc of Beasts of Chaos (180)*
9 x Untamed Beasts (70)*
9 x Untamed Beasts (70)

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment
**Hunters of the Heartlands

Total: 1975 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 3 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 173
Drops: 6

Notable Features

  • Beasts of Chaos almost podiumed! It only didn’t because second and third drew!
  • This list is streamlined and runs a total of four warscrolls; all serving a valuable purpose.

Why it’s Interesting

BoC finally make a splash on the competitive scene with a fun and powerful list that immediately makes you want to buy it (and then contemplate building and painting it PLUS the summoning pool, then crying and emptying your basket). 173 wounds that start on the board that will only grow in number as the game progresses, 3 units of hard hitting cavalry that fly 16″, and some very cost effective dragon ogors to gum up the board while the summoning engine gets going.

Let’s briefly summarise what the recent WD update did for BoC, as viewed through the lens of this list:

  • Dragon Ogors now have rend 1 base, rend 2 if they bring War-Glaives, rend 3 in battle round 3 and up to rend 3 if they have Sundering Weapons cast on them.
  • With the rally changes from the hearthstone, units defending home objectives are now very sticky, and dragon ogors/enlightened in particular could remove casualties such that they get out of combat (thanks to their large bases), then rally back on the following turn.
  • Extra summoning points thanks to the new monstrous rampage, which one of the Shoggoths can do while squatting at home sacrificing himself repeatedly to the herdstone.

Rounding out the list are some untamed beasts, which basically do what ungor raiders do but cheaper – providing a pregame moving screen that doesn’t give up broken ranks.

The Rest of the Best

8 more players finished on 4-1 or 4-0-1, which we’ll cover below:

  • 3rd – Andrew Currie – Maggotkin of Nurgle: Glottkin Drowned Men list that has a bit of everything: Blightlords, Blightkings, Plaguebearers and even 2 Mindstealer Sphiranx.
  • 5th – Phil Marshall – Slaves to Darkness: The popular Host of the Everchosen build going around, with Archaon, 6 Varanguard, a CSL, a CL and some cultists to add some bulk.
  • 6th – James Clark – Soulblight Gravelords: This LoN list brings all the typical faces, but the battleline is interesting – 40 Skeletons and some Vargheists! What a deep book.
  • 7th – Nathan Watson – Legion of the First Prince: Nathan drops the Khorne DP (priority target change potentially) and invests in 20 pink horrors with his flex points.
  • 8th – Adam Sinclair – Kharadron Overlords: A Zilfin list packs the boats in with an Ironclad, 2 Frigates and a Gunhauler, with Gotrek bringing some much needed melee punch.
  • 9th – Dean Lymath – Stormcast Eternals: A total of 15 Protectors and 6 Annhiliators anchor this Knights Excelsior list.
  • 10th – Michael Wilson – Daughters of Khaine: A Morathi and the Bowsnakes list that strips back some of the snake presence for some Witch Aelves, a Cauldron and some Harpies.
  • 11th – Oscar Macartney – Soulblight Gravelords: A mad Kastelai list with 25 blood knights, 20 Dire Wolves and a VLOZD + Radukar for even more Dire Wolves.

Dazmaul Wargaming Tournament 2022

A two-day, five-round event held at Battlefield Hobbies in Daventry, England. You can find lists for this event at Tabletop.to

Declan Waters – Big Waaagh – First Place

Boss Nob or Brute – Credit Beanith

Declan's List - Click to expand

Big Waaagh!

– Grand Strategy: Hold the Line

Leaders
Megaboss on Maw-Krusha (480)*
– General
– Boss Choppa and Rip-tooth fist
– Command Trait: Touched by the Waaagh!
– Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)
– Mount Trait: Fast ‘Un
– Lore of the Weird: Da Great Big Green Hand of Gork
Wurrgog Prophet (150)*
– Artefact: Glowin’ Tattooz
– Universal Spell Lore: Flaming Weapon
Orruk Warchanter (115)*
– Warbeat: Fixin’ Beat
Orruk Warchanter (115)*
– Warbeat: Fixin’ Beat

Battleline
10 x Orruk Brutes (320)**
– Jagged Gore-hackas
– 2x Gore Choppas
– Reinforced x 1
10 x Orruk Brutes (320)**
– Jagged Gore-hackas
– 2x Gore Choppas
– Reinforced x 1
5 x Orruk Ardboys (85)***
– 1x Gorkamorka Banner Bearers
5 x Orruk Ardboys (85)***
– 1x Gorkamorka Banner Bearers

Units
4 x Ironskull’s Boyz (80)***
3 x Orruk Gore-gruntas (170)**
– Jagged Gore-hackas
2 x Savage Big Stabbas (80)*

Core Battalions
*Warlord
**Hunters of the Heartlands
***Ironjawz Fist

Additional Enhancements
Artefact

Total: 2000 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 2 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 148
Drops: 11

Notable Features

  • Big Waaagh getting it done, though it’s mostly Ironjawz
  • 20 Brutes and a Mawcrusha is a lot to deal with normally, now imagine them all hitting and wounding on 2s.
  • DEATH LAZER HERO!

Why it’s Interesting

I’ve been watching Declan tweak this list since I first saw it at PSU a few months back – it’s taking the excellent warscrolls from Ironjawz and pairing them with a set of allegiance abilities that allow them to better play the long game, as generally by late round 2 you can be expecting to hit and wound on 2s for most of the stuff in your army.

So the list can teleport stuff, the Mawcrusha can hang back and threaten the entire board as needed, it has a lot of wounds to chew through, and then there’s the Wurgogg Prophet. The Wurgogg is notable for it’s eye stare, where it can give up it’s spellcasting for a turn in order to perform a game of russian roulette chicken with a target of choice. Go and look up the warscroll, it’s a blast.

I’ve been playing Big Waaagh myself and love the toolbox nature of it, and Declan leans into the strengths of the faction hard with a lot of units that really benefit from the suite of buffs unlocked as the game progresses.

Baz Norman Jr – Daughters of Khaine – Second Place

Credit: Dan Richardson

Baz's List - Click to expand

Daughters of Khaine
– Subfaction: Khailebron
– Grand Strategy: Hold the Line
– Triumph: Inspired

Leaders
Morathi-Khaine (660)*
The Shadow Queen (660)*
Melusai Ironscale (115)*
– General
– Command Traits: Mistress of Illusion
– Artefacts of Power: Whisperdeath

Battleline
15 x Blood Stalkers (540)*
10 x Blood Sisters (280)*
5 x Blood Sisters (140)*

Other
9 x Khainite Shadowstalkers (120)*
9 x Khainite Shadowstalkers (120)*

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment

Total Points: 1975/2000

Notable Features

  • Fairly standard Morathi and the Bowsnakes List.
  • Shadowstalkers bring some tactical flexibility to what is typically a defensive castle list.

Why it’s Interesting

Baz is a lovely gent and I’ve had the pleasure to play against him recently at Sheffield Slaughter. The list leans into what DoK does best – be a dick with Morathi and some great damage output from the snakes.

Thanks to the versatility provided, this list can play well defensively and offensively, and Shadowstalkers can threaten the backboard if your opponent doesn’t maintain screens all game thanks to their movement phase teleport.

The Rest of the Best

3 more players finished on 4-1, which we’ll cover below:

  • 3rd – Tom Wainwright – Slaves to Darkness: Host of the Everchosen list that brings some chaos knights and a chaos spawn and goes minimal on cultist bodies.
  • 4th – Mathew Bell – Lumineth Realm Lords: Teclis, 30 Sentinels and a Cathallar headline – a classic that still has legs despite several targeted nerfs to it’s key pieces.
  • 6th – Alex Ireland – Maggotkin of Nurgle: Befouling Host list that leans on summoning and Beasts of Nurgle.

Next Time: More Fallout from the Hunt

That’s it! The Idoneth and Fyreslayers updates are upon us now and we’ll see how they pan out – I expect we’ll see some Idoneth lists podium fairly quickly as it’s a popular army for competitive players and they look rock solid going into the current metagame. See you next time!

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