Yep, No Lords of the Lodge … I’ll just wait here while you go back and check … nope, it wasnt a typo …
Going to CanCon, I didnt want to just run the Hermdar – Lord of the Lodge standard crutch, so I upped it to ‘hard mode’ and had a red hot crack. Ok, just really wanted to play 6 new armies and 6 new players as it was my first AoS event in a few years (and only second since 7th Ed WFB).
Ended up 94th, but played on table 9 in game 5 against the guy who came 5th, and narrowly lost the last game (had never played against Slaanesh before…), so finished down the ladder compared to people picking up points in ‘garbage time’ (thats a basketball analogy).
All my opponents were great people and I played 6 new armies so it was a steep learning curve with a new army (started 3 months ago). Hopefully better players than me can adapt this and learn from my errors.
Vostarg – why not!
OK, 4 things for Vostarg to be aware of …
Abilities: Run 6″ turn 1 and +1 to charges. The first allows you to position turn 1 … hang back a bit but still be where you want. +1 charge is always good (see some notes below)
Trait: Run and Charge. OK, this is a biggie. See below about the battalion, but this just gives a bit more speed late game (Combined with the +1 to charge, a unit of vulkites can zip around unexpectedly …)
Artefact: Vosaxe. -1 Rend, 6 to hit = some bonus I keep forgetting 🙂
Command Ability: +1 to hit … see the notes on the battalion
Artefacts, Command Traits & Abilities
The only choice was the Aetherquartz Brooch … you will understand when I talk about the Battalion (actually, skip to that bit as its kinda important as to how this whole thing runs).
As for Au Gold runes, I got enhanced twice in 30 rolls, so just assume you wont get it!
There is no magic defence. You can get the banner but it doesnt help stop their buffs. I subscribe to the age old philosophy of the best magic defence is an axe to the face of the wizard!
Auric Runeson (100)
– Ancestral War-axe
– Trait: Fiery Endurance
A Runeson as your general? Have you gone mad? Maybe … but, as noted below, he will be hanging with the Vulkites and they need the buffs he gives, so may as well be him. Can look after himself, but shouldnt be near combat. He isnt a real threat so peole just ignore him anyway!
Auric Runemaster (120)
– Artefact: Aetherquartz Brooch
– Prayer: Prayer of Ash
He brings the Forge (so to speak), hangs around the back. The brooch gives me a 5+ chance to keep the Command Points (which we will burn through).
Prayer of Ash buffs a units save … throw on a Vulkites unit to give it a 3+ after the charge.
His prayer helps keep people from terrain. Good to throw out and hope for the best. Likes to hit blobs in terrain
Both these go in reserves to drop down turn 1.
Their basic prayer of re-roll to wound is brilliant! Throw this around like candy, eeryone wants it!
They dont want to fight so always take the Forge Key for that extra range …
One goes with the Hearthguard Berzerkers, so they get the Run and Charge. That way, when the Hearthguard Berzerkers delete something, they can get to their next target quickly. Or they can give it to a Vulkites unit that is too far from the Runeson
The other throws out a -1 to enemy to hit rolls which weakens units trying to go after stuff (more in tactics)
Grimwrath Berzerker (100)
– Artefact: Vosaxe
Vosaxe makes him -3 Rend! Fight after dying means he can suicide into something and hope still do something. Keep him near the Runeson. That way when you pop the abilities, he can run and charge, 3 attacks on 2+/2+ with -3 rend and 2 damage, fighting twice on a 2+ (or if killed). Not to mention Au Gold runes … This is the beat stick!
Ha! You didnt see that coming did you. Honestly, I had 100 pts left and thought I may give him a try. Technically won me one game (he went down a flank in Three Places of Power and stood on an objective by himself for a while … )
Strangely, I just picked a chaff unit as his target, and most people moved the unit away from him as they were worried about him fighting twice.
You could drop this for another Grimwrath (but seriously, two? We are better than that …). Maybe a second Runeson (except we dont like duplicates if we can help it.)
A few notes …
Battlesmith is good, but Im not standing around in his bubble, and he is a big target. I also like to be able to retreat if needed (sometimes you need to)
The Runefather is not a great beatstick and adds nothing I dont already have.
Tried the Shadespire Warband but I dont want a Runefather …
10 x Vulkite Berzerkers (140)
– War-Picks & Slingshields
10 x Vulkite Berzerkers (140)
– War-Picks & Slingshields
10 x Vulkite Berzerkers (140)
– War-Picks & Slingshields
These guys are for the battalion. My word … so awesome! 20 wounds, and under the right circumstances can deal out the pain!
I built these with Warpicks and Shields. I keep forgetting the shields MW bonus. In retrospect, I may have gone double axes, for the reroll to hit. But the Rend is nice.
20 x Hearthguard Berzerkers (400)
So they need an introduction? 6 to hit is 2MW. The Runesmiter that drops in with them can give then reroll to wound (prayer) and +1 to hit (Vostarg CA). Who needs to fight twice?
10 x Auric Hearthguard (240)
5 x Auric Hearthguard (120)
Ok, the unit of 5 hangs with te Runeson and Runemaster as 10 ablative wounds that sometimes shoots.
The unit of 10 drops in. When they do, drop them in near the Runesmiter for the Hearthgiard so that he (or she, I’m not to judge) also gets the ablative wound bonus. Then shoot something nearby. If there is a Monster, all the better! Have a crack at a buffing character if you need. Taking down a bloodstoker is probably the best (through one-shotting a bloodthirster is also nice).
Vostarg Warrior Kinband (110)
Runeson, 3 x Vulkite Berzerkers
Vulkites get +1 Attack when Wholly Within 12″ of the Runeson
OK, this is the meat and potatoes of the list! Put the Runeson in the middle, 2-3 units of Vulkites wholly within 12″. They wont see it coming!
So, I get +1 Attack (battalion), Run and Charge (trait). The Runesome can give +1 to wound bubble (his own CA) and +1 to hit bubble (Vostarg CA).
Thats 3 Attacks, hitting on 2’s, wounding on 3’s, with -1 rend.
If the Runesmiter goes off, add in re-roll to wound
With a Au Gold you can also re-roll ‘s to hit, or add more rend.
Ideal circumstances is 2 CP (you have then turn 1), a 2+ prayer for re-roll wounds and re-roll 1’s (Au Gold) means 31 attacks, hitting on 2’s (reroll), wounding on 3’s (reroll) and -1 rend. Thats over 26 wounds at -1. And the unit next to it can basically do the same (you would need a second prayer, but the rest are all bubbles or army wide buffs)
Slam a unit into something and whilst they are not up there with Herthguard Berzerkers (who is …) they will suddenly be doing a heap of damage … and people wont expect it!
Lets be honest, Lord of the Lodge allows you to fight twice, but its a 900 pt investment of headaches of keeping things all together, and so much of a point sink (and I found in the few gamesI used it that you killed most things in one round anyway). This battalion comes in at 630 all up …
Pfft! We are Fyreslayers! We care not for such things (But seriously, we dont need anything).
Magic, Endless & Realm Spells
Molten Infernoth (50)
I like this one. Your mileage my vary. Throw it out and anything within 3″ takes between 0 and lots of Mortal Wounds. Sometimes 0 or 1, sometimes 4 or 5. 2 rounds of that and most support heroes are toast. Fyreslayers are slow so anything that may make my opponent move where they dont want is a good thing.
I dont use the Fyrewall as Im always moving, and similarly the artillery one is great, but who is hanging around at the back? We fight …
Deployment is where it starts.
Next, I drop the battalion. 2 units go near the main objective I am gunning for, all within 12″ of the Runeson. The other goes on a flank nearby . You dont need all the objectives … so just grab what you need to win.
RuneMaster goes near the runeson, as does the ablative wounds (5 Auric Hearthguard). Lastly, the Grimwrath goes in the bubble as a beatstick (and also for ablative wounds from the aurics) and the Doomseekers goes nearby as well.
Sometimes the last two heros go wider to block stuff. The doomseeker in particular is expendable. I can also spread out if my opponet has stuff coming in behind or one flanks, then use my speed turn to bunch back up and prepare for a turn 2 ‘smash face’.
The Doomseeker then picks a chaff unit as his target and runs at it! People worry about this and try to take him down (not hard, but with -1 to hit from a unit nearby its not that easy). Still, things not shooting my main units.
Turn 1 my bubble moves up to the main objective. If Im going first, I can grab whatever objectives I want with the 6 ” Run. Going second, I can generally wun up and charge. +1 for Vulkite Horns and +1 for Vostarg, so moving 10 and charging 2D6+2 … not so slow now, eh?
Meanwhile, the units arrive from reserve. 3 main options …
- Attack the objective people think I was giving up. Say hello to my little friends! Deal with that…
- Kill the biggest, baddest, ugliest thing in my opponents army. The thing likely to make their army unbeatable (wizard and buffers) or turn mine into a fine red paste.
- Reinforce my line if it needs it
Dont forget, +1 to charge, with CP re-roll (5+ to get back) if needed. They generally go in (they need 8’s, rerolling as a character is nearby) so not too much of a risk. And if they dont … oh well.
First turn I normally use the +1 Bravery Au Gold Rune to bolster bravery, as I dont know where the big fights will be yet (and dont want to lose to much to the odd wound here or there). But if you do want to fight, go stright to the relevant combat one (normally -1 rend, but Nighthaunt often have a say in that one …)
Turn 2, I generally buff the bubble (2 CP now, 1 for the battalion and one for the turn 2 (I may have used one to get the Hearthguard in on turn 1). If I have more, then all the better! If I get some back with the brooch, then repeat the pain next turn.
If possible, the Grimwrath, Doomseeker and 2 units of Vulkites all benefit from the Run and Charge, +1 to hit, +1 to wound, and Vulkites get +1 Attack. Throw in a prayer of Reroll wounds, Au Gold of reroll 1s to hit ot -1 rend, and debuff their unit with -1 to hit (prayer).
Keep the movement Au Gold for later when you may need to move around to tidy up some objectives.
Not sure what else to add, but its just experience in picking the right targets andkeepign an eye on the victory conditions. Took a game or two to sort out a few ideas, and the list still needs some tweaking, but if you dont want to go Hermdar, there are still some tricks to use to be competitive (and it plays differently to Hermdar, which gives you an advantage as they dont expect stuff)
And a big note … the Hearthguard Berzerkers will draw a lot of attention. They are a distraction carnifex. They kill something and make people panic. Let them die (not easily). People will be happy they killed them. Meanwhile, use the Vulkites to build up a substantial lead on VP’s.
Results at CanCon were
Big win over Ossiarch Bonereapers (Petrifiex Elite).
Big win over Beasts of Chaos (very nice all minotaur army).
Minor Loss to Shootcast (2 objectives each, he got kills). Never played it before (same with all armies) and had no real idea. Great bloke. Next time I may have a few other ideas.
Big loss in last game vs Slaanesh. Got his last character down to 1 wound and a chariot with 3 wounds left …then 80+ depravity points came back and cleaned me up … so could have gone the other way.
So the challenge is there … drop the Hermdar and find something else! Only started getting Fyreslayers 3 months ago so will be interesting to see where they can go from here.
First event playingn with these … I generally just picked something randomly and waited to see if I had a chance end game.