We’re once again joined by Peter of Plastic Craic, this time helping out with coverage of Age of Sigmar, a game he’s more known for covering. In today’s article, he’s reviewing the new Kruleboyz Warscrolls from the Dominion boxed set.
We’ve got Boyz! We’ve got chaff! We’ve got a big dude on a pig-monster thing! Dammit, we’ve even got Dakka!
Da Kruleboyz are already a surprisingly well-rounded army just off the Dominion set alone – so let’s get stuck into those Warscrolls, and see what they offer.
First Up – Allegiance Abilities
Let’s start off with the Allegiance Ability in the Dominion box, to give a bit of context to what follows:
(Almost) army-wide mortal wounds? Don’t mind if I do!
I’m guessing that the eventual Kruleboyz book will put a bit more flesh on the bone, but this already gives us something to work with. A few things to keep a close eye on when aiming to maximise this ability are:
- Volume of attacks. More dice is more sixes, and that’s more better.
- Buffs. Can we get this down to say a 5+, instead of a 6+? (Spoiler alert: yes we can).
- Keywords. We need Kruleboyz and Orruk to get this – sorry Hobgrots.
- Multiple damage. Easy to skim over is that this is not 1 mortal wound – it’s a number of mortal wounds equal to the damage characteristic of the weapon. Spicy!
Two other things to mention here are that there are no re-rolls available to go fishing for those 6s – which I like as a design choice, to keep things flowing. Given the changes to rules like Mystic Shield and the All-out Attack Command Ability, this seems to be a consistent trend in early AOS 3, and it’s one I’d love to see continued.
Secondly, it does not specify melee weapons, so you will get this on shooting weapons too. Dakka Dakka Dakka indeed.
Urgh here you go then, you impatient gits:
The rumour is that 3rd edition will herald something of a reset in the models-creep that we’ve seen across 6 years of AOS, the suggestion being that we’ll see roughly 10% point increases across the board (with, of course, winners and losers beyond that). At time of writing, we are yet to receive review copies of the General’s Handbook, so we cannot confirm that will be the case – but it’s probably the best estimate to proceed with until we do.
The final thing to cover here is the omnipresent ORRUK WARCLANS keyword. Games Workshop have confirmed that the Venom-encrusted Weapons will work in Warclans, but the exact mechanism for this is yet to be seen.
It could be as simple as an Erratum in the big Day 1 Patch, to insert this rule it into Big Waaagh (where the Kruleboyz already naturally fit, given their Orruk keyword); or it could mean an updated Warclans book is imminent. We’ll have to explore the full implications of that when the time comes, but for now, the Orruk units can all get +1 to hit and +1 to wound in combat, and gain extra attacks from the Big Waaagh command ability to chuck a lot more dice at those 6s. Or 5s, as you will soon see…
…because we’re starting off with DA BEST. I love this guy. 6 wounds on a 5+ is about par for the course: no big surprises there.
Where this fella earns his shrooms is that Poisons and Elixirs ability:
- It just happens, no rolling required
- In a world of magic-shutter-downers, this is a huge quality-of-life boost: you’ve got a great option even if you know your casts will be smacked down
- Note that it stops you casting ALL spells that turn, so you can’t get saucy with slowing down Cogs and do both. Fair enough
Even Elixirs is great, lasting as it does until your next Hero phase – so it will give you protection right through every phase, including overwatch. Very nice.
Beyond that, even his warscroll spell is amazing. Mucking around with charge ranges boardwide is A BIG DEAL, and not just because you can cast it safely from out of unbind range. There’s already a couple of ways we can lean into this:
Boggy Mist: Gork Edition
Load up the +1 to charge from the spell with your native +1 to charge from Big Waaagh, and you have, erm….+2 to charge. Make those clutch charges, get Waaagh points for doing so, get more Waaagh points for being in combat, let’s go!
Boggy Mist: Mork Edition
If, like me, you feed on that eye-rolling energy, cast this spell then save a CP for Redeploy:
Even a short charge is no sure thing with this one – it will write you stories, and it will win you games.
Final shoutout goes to that D3 Damage characteristic, so if you get stuck in a scrap he can even get lucky and punch out a few mortal wounds. Love it.
Verdict: If you’re buying multiples of this box, you will put multiples of him on the table. He’s that good.
Murknob with Belcha Banner
Rocking 6 wounds on a 4+ save, this guy can hold his own in a punch-up as far as support heroes go – but what does he deliver for the army?
First up is that TOTEM keyword, meaning he can dish out Command Abilities in a big 18″ bubble. Off to a good start.
Next up is his signature ability, Power of Kragnos, giving out a 5+ spell and endless spell shrug to units wholly within 12″. That’s undoubtedly nice to have, especially in an era of endless spells double-tapping, but certainly not enough to reliably save you.
And….that’s pretty much it. He has a mortal wound gimmick if he gets into combat, but nothing that would intimidate an opponent out of charging him. He’s not awful, but as a support hero, he could maybe do a bit more supporting. The Murknob brings some utility, but I’m really not sure he does enough for the army to warrant inclusion – and the main thing that catches my attention on this warscroll is the explicit reference to Kragnos, raising my hopes that Special K will be a full part of this army.
Verdict: Not without his charms, but in practice I’d generally try to find the extra 10 points for another Shaman.
Killaboss with Stab-Grot
OK the first thing you’re going to do is clip the flail off the sprue, and tuck it away safely in your bits box. Two puny attacks is in no way comparable to the power of a 3+ save, so you’re taking the shield every time.
He’s pretty much a 7-wound model (taking into account his little buddy), and 7 wounds on a 3+ is decent… and very reminiscent of the modern classic, the Ironjawz Megaboss.
He doesn’t slap as hard as a Megaboss, but that bravery ability is very interesting indeed. In a world where Inspiring Presence can only be used once per phase, this dude has my attention, and it’s worth noting that it benefits Hobgrots as well as Orruks. One nice little quality of life feature is that his wee buddy is not a mount, so you can generate Venom-encrusted Weapons mortal wounds from those three attacks too.
Verdict: 140 points seems pretty reasonable in new money, and I think this little fella will see some play. Thumbs up.
Killaboss on Great Gnashtoof
You know what a 3+ save is? A 3+ save is a 2+ save. Between the new Mystic Shield, Elixirs, the Their Finest Hour Heroic Action and the All-Out Defence Command Ability, +1 to save is there if you want it. So with 10 wounds and a native 3+, this guy is quite the tank.
He brings the same bravery bubble as his foot-slogging analogue, with added speed to deliver it where you want it; and he’s hitting on 2s on the charge. Both iterations of the Killaboss enjoy a damage characteristic of 2, banging out 2 mortal wounds on every 6 (or 5) to hit, although remember that the Mount attacks here will not get that ability.
He’s chunky enough to be worth investing Enhancements in, and there will be some pretty cool loadouts to explore: just for fun, you could make him a Wizard with the Arcane Tome, then cast Flaming Weapon on himself. His weapon is now Damage 3, which is cool in its own right, but also gives him 3 mortal wounds on a hit roll of 6. No doubt there will be more when he has a full book behind him.
It’s fair to say that a total of 8 attacks does seem a little light-on for what is quite an impressive miniature. Take comfort that all that extra plastic capital wasn’t wasted, it just went into durability over smashing.
Verdict: I might have preferred to see an extra attack or two on each profile, and maybe even that sexy, sexy Monster keyword – how is a Sphiranx a Monster, but not this fine beast? – with a higher points cost to match. But whichever way you slice it, this is a really solid warscroll at the points.
I’ve had a few people tell me that they don’t want Hobgrots to be a mainstay of the army, because they don’t like the models. Well if that’s how you feel, boy did you just hit the jackpot – these guys are awful.
It’s hard to overstate just how truly awful they are. It’s OK to be bad – having a cheap unit to stand on an objective, screen out a deepstrike or wear a Terrorgheist to the face wins you matches. What makes Hobgrots awful is that they’re not cheap enough for how feeble they are.
The melee attacks are utter trash, wounding as they do on 5s with no rend and damage 1. The shooting is slightly less bad, but not to the extent of doing meaningful damage, especially in overwatch where they’ll be throwing a small amount of dice hitting on 5s. 3 bad attacks per model might seem OK from a purely weight-of-dice perspective, until you remember that they don’t get the Venom-encrusted Weapons since they lack the Orruk keyword.
There is no end to similar units that make Hobgrots look awful. Skinks at 60 points are so much better that it’s not even funny. Granted this is because of the extravagant suite of easy buffs they have available, but that’s an important factor – the Skink keyword is one of the most important in the game, whereas Hobgrots lack the keyword to get their own allegiance ability. It would seem…unlikely that the book is dishing out huge buffs to Hobrgots.
Zombies dish out mortal wounds and have a 6″ pile in. Looking at those grenades, I was hopeful that Hobgrots could pop out mortals in the shooting phase, but no dice. At only 20 points more for an extra 10 models, the comparison is pretty ugly.
Even Moonclan Grots are a relatively good deal: 25 or 35 more points for an extra 10 models, that are negative 1 to hit and +2 to run. Granted, all of these are old money points costs, but the gulf is so huge that it would take a lot to bring Hobgrots back into contention. Like, a lot.
Verdict: Utterly woeful and utterly tedious, there is nothing in the slightest way interesting on this warscroll. Nonetheless, Hobgrots may yet prove to be a necessary evil, as the cheapest trash available to the army.
Your main boyz, Gutrippaz are geared for war in 3rd ed. Rocking that 2″ reach is clutch with the new coherency rules, and they should be able to generate a decent number of attacks to fish for those mortal wounds we’ve talked so much about.
Which is just as well, because their attacks are slightly crap other than that, and there isn’t much interesting on their warscroll in terms of unique abilities. That 5+ save and bravery 5 is pretty scary – run them down, and they will pop like balloons – but as we’ve seen above, they’ve got ways to dodge you and fight on their own terms. 180 points is pretty eyebrow-raising for a warscroll with these fundamentals, but it strikes me very much as one geared up for layered allegiance abiities, buffs and smart play.
C-C-C-Combo: Gutrippaz in Big Waaagh
The likelihood is that in any given build, you will have fewer Orruks on the table in 3rd ed, so it’s going to be harder to build up the Waaagh points early on. From a strictly Big Waaagh perspective then, it might have been preferable for these to be cheaper 1-wound Orruks to get your body count up, but we are where we are. So what can we do with them?
The first thing we’ll do is give them a Poison, so they’re banging on 5s. The next thing we’ll do is call a Waaagh, which they (currently) benefit from directly, as Orruks. So they’re throwing out 3 attacks each with 2″ range, and smashing out a mortal wound on every 5+. You do lack rend, but you are hitting and wounding on 3s and 3s with the Big Waaagh Battle Trait, and you can easily get that down to 2s and 3s with a friendly Warchanter throwing down Killa Beat.
At this point, a unit of 30 (for the bold) is doing 30 mortal wounds alone, and forcing a lot of regular saves through weight of dice. 540 points might be a bit rich, but it still scales fine with a 20-block for example. We’ll need to see the final product before we get deep into Big Waaagh list building, but the early indication is that you can have some fun with Gutrippaz in there.
Verdict: Slightly underwhelming currently, but Gutrippaz are on rapid upgrade watch when they have a full suite of support behind them.
Dakka Dakka Dakka! Here comes the shooting support that Orruks have needed ever since Gitmob got Gitmobbed,
As fragile as all shooting units should be, the best thing about these boyz is that flat 2 damage characteristic – both in its own right, and also as a payoff to Venom-encrusted Weapons. There is a weird lack of warscroll abilities running through this army, reaching its apogee here: they essentially get nothing other than an explanation of how their missile weapons actually work. It’s honestly pretty sparse, and I’m hoping their Battletome puts some flesh on the bones.
Since they’re not Battleline, you’re running these in a maximum unit size of 6. Their range is also pretty tight for the modern game: 24″ if you don’t move, or 17″ if you do. So you’re not going to win a firefight with Boltboyz – they’re a tool within the army, rather than its backbone. Tricky to use well, good enough to use but not good enough to spam – and that’s just fine.
Verdict: A welcome piece of utility in the army. Should feel fair to play against with their limited range and fragility – and seems priced fairly to reflect those limitations.
I know what you’re all thinking – all this is well and good, Pete, but do you have a graph for us?
And the answer is yes. Yes I do.
Considering there are only 7 warscrolls, that’s quite the spread, don’t’cha think?
I wouldn’t be ready to take Kruleboyz to an event with these rules – certainly not one I was aiming to do well at – but there’s enough here to get working with, and I’m pretty optimistic that once we see the full allegiance kit, the core units will be zooming diagonally upwards on this chart.
Now show us the new Spear Chukkas please, GW.
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