• It's time once again to ferret out those murderous vampires in a new VAU - Vampires Amongst Us. A cross between Cluedo and a roleplay, sometimes gory and often hilarious! Find out more and sign-up! here.
Handbook: Soulblight Gravelords
by
The Sun King​

Introduction
This handbook is a subjective assessment of the Soulblight Gravelords faction, meant to help newcomers to the game. As we become more familiar with Age of Sigmar 3.0 the handbook will change accordingly. The ratings are subjective and should only be used as a rule of thumb. Age of Sigmar is no exact science and opinions will therefore differ – not even our collective wisdom can deduce an ultimate truth. However, this handbook should offer insights into the intricacies of the Soulblight Gravelords. The ratings and comments are based on uncomped competitive play at around 2000 points. Thanks to Unas the slayer for giving input to the first draft of this handbook.

And as always remember the golden rule: Wargaming is supposed to be fun. This handbook is not trying to dictate that competitive play is the only, or even the right, way of playing.


Rating scale
No unit exists in a vacuum and the ratings should reflect that. Thus the ratings are given based on how effectively the unit accomplishes its role in the army. However, all army lists are different so the analysis of each unit will be based on a very general perspective and common assumptions (e.g. fast and cheap units are used as screens etc.).

✪✩✩✩✩ is unusable. This rating is reserved for the real stinkers. Picking this can only make your list worse.

✪✪✩✩✩ is situational. You need to have a specific purpose in mind if you pick this. Without a plan for the selection you will make your list worse by picking this.

✪✪✪✩✩ is decent. These are balanced selections but are not a must have either.

✪✪✪✪✩ is good. Most lists benefit from this selection and you should definitely consider it.

✪✪✪✪✪ is amazing. This rating is reserved for the best our book has to offer.

Change Log
  • 15.11.2021 - Fixed some typos, added an introduction to the rating scale and updated the entries of Deathrattle Skeletons, Dire Wolves, Black Knights, Fell Bats, Grave Guard, Belladamma, Gorslav and Radukar the Beast.

Units

Battleline

A great tarpit with a mortal bite. Zombies have never been good at fighting but that changed with our new book as they gained the ability to cause mortal wounds on 6s, which is amazing. They clock in at 5.75 points per wound and thus are the cheapest unit in our faction in that regard. They have no armour so will rely on Deathless Minions and healing to stick around. However, for each wound they cause in combat they get a zombie added to the unit on a 2+. So they don’t even need healing from external sources, they can keep themselves alive. Remember that this ability can bring them above their starting unit size (which was clarified in this FAQ). As a battleline unit you can double reinforce Zombies thus getting them to a massive 60 bodies. More often than not 40 is more than enough for an adequate tarpit, but there is something great about watching your opponent’s despair when you slap 60 zombies on an objective. Zombies are quite slow so don’t expect them to get from one end of the table to the other. Keep them in your territory to guard objectives and flanks or move them to the center of the table to gain board control. Also remember that you can keep them in reserve and spawn them from gravesites. Zombies combo well with the Necromancer’s Vanhel’s Danse Macabre spell as they can exploit their extra long pile in move twice. The Vampire Lord’s command ability Crimson Feast is also a very threatening synergy with the Zombies as you’ll get a ton of extra attacks to land those sweet mortal wounds on 6’s. Gorslav the Gravekeeper is another great combo-piece with Zombies as he can bring a destroyed unit back at half strength with his command ability. If you field Zombies as a unit of 20 they are cheap and expendable backliners. If you field them as 40 or 60 they become a formidable tarpit with the ability to dish out good amounts of mortal wounds. Remember to keep Inspiring Presence in hand when you have a round where you know that your Zombies will take massive casualties. Zombies are extremely cheap, have great staying power, bravery 10 and can even cause mortal wounds - what more can we ask for?

Skeletons are the fighting core of the Soublight armies - they are not great warriors but they are not useless either. At 8.5 points per wound they are moderately priced but need some help in order to shine (such as the Vyrkos dynasty bonus). It is worth noting that skellies are the cheapest battleline unit when taken at minimum size. However a unit of 10 is not a threat to anything and are therefore best used holding safe objectives or as a screening unit. Skeleton Legion is an interesting rule as it encourages you to activate your unit after they have suffered casualties. This also incentivises you to take them in bigger units, as they need some bodies to soak up the incoming attacks. Skeleton Legion is also really good in combination with Vanhel’s Danse Macabre as it lets the Skellies resurrect twice in the same phase. Wight Kings can use their command ability to give skeletons rerolls on 1s to hit, but this is a minor buff when compared to the Vampire Lord’s Crimson Feast. It is worth noting that one advantage that skeletons have over zombies is that they have a unit champion so they can issue commands to themselves. All in all the Deathrattle Skeletons are a decent unit but compared with our other Battleline choices they fall a bit short.

Dire Wolves have great mobility and are durable because of their 5+ save, 2 wounds per model and Deathless Minions. They are even decent fighters on the charge. Normally a cheap and fast cavalry unit would be squishy and have bad bravery… Dire Wolves do not care for “normal” however and at 6.75 points per wound they are a real bargain. Don’t expect them to do great in combat, but they can hold off most enemy flankers. Their only real drawback is their large footprint - you’ll find that a unit of 10 wolves will take up quite a lot of space. The base size is also the reason why you would often not field more than 10 in a single unit, since the doggos only have 1" reach. One exception to this is if you run them with Belladamma and a general with Spoor Trackers - then you can throw 30 wolves 19" up the board, turn one and pile in 6" with Belladamma's Command Ability. Don't forget that Dire Wolves are Deadwalkers (more like deadrunners) and therefore debuffs enemy bravery. Dire Wolves excel at grabbing objectives outside your own territory and stopping enemy flankers. With their good movement they can also quickly reroute and help out in a combat where you have become outnumbered..


Other

Black Knights compete with Dire Wolves for our cheap cavalry slot and at 12 points per wound they are almost double the price of our zombie doggos. They do offer a bit more though as they have more attacks per model (which is good given their base size) and cause mortal wounds (at least 80% of the time) on charges. It is still not enough to warrant their price tag. However, if you pick the Legion of Blood dynasty they gain two important buffs and then the Black Knights are a bit better. First off they become battleline, which makes them more appealing as they can thus replace Dire Wolves in that regard. Secondly the Favoured Retainer’s allegiance ability makes it so that the Black Knights cannot suffer debuffs to their attacks if they are within 12” of a Vampire (18” for the General) which is good stuff, albeit somewhat circumstantial. Don’t forget that Black Knights are summonable and deathrattle which means you can get them back through gravesites should they die. They can also be healed by Invigorating Aura which is one point in their favor compared to Blood Knights. They are an ok pick if you need a fast screen for your important units. One small benefit they have over our Dire Wolves is that they are only 5 and thus easier to keep in coherency. They can also be used to draw out Unleash Hell if you charge with them before you charge with your more important units.

Blood Knights are fast and hit hard. At 13 points per wound they are only 1 point more expensive than their skeletal siblings. For that 1 point you gain an insane increase in damage output and survivability. With a 3+ save, 6+ ward, 3 wounds and The Hunger a Blood Knight is a tough model to bring down. Riders of Ruin gives them the ability to make normal moves even in combat, so they do not have to retreat. On top of that they even cause mortal wounds when they ride through other units. Absolute insanity. If you want to go full on with Blood Knights you can get them as Battleline if you choose the Kastelai dynasty.

The cart has some nice abilities but its big drawbacks are the slow movement and the fact that it has only 6 wounds and almost no protection. At 13.33 points per wound with a horrible save it is a quite unreliable investment. The only good thing about that is that if the opponent chooses to focus on it, it will buy time for your other units. You have two options with the Corpse Cart: You can either choose the Balefire Brazier or the Unholy Lodestone and both are decent. The brazier debuffs enemy casting and nearby wound rolls, so if you are going up against a magic heavy army this should be your choice. The Unholy Lodestone buffs your own wizards and zombies so if you want to go a magic heavy route this is the best choice. The Corpsecart will tend to be placed centrally behind zombies to get the most out of its limited range on its buffs and debuffs. If this is the case consider picking a Necromancer as well that can benefit from the +1 to cast. All in all it is too slow and squishy to be an outstanding unit but it does have its uses.

Fell Bats are an extremely fast and small unit that is amazing at grabbing neglected objectives and achieving battle tactics (like Ferocious Advance, Aggressive Expansion and Savage Spearhead). They can also function as a screen for your other units or draw out Unleash Hell when needed. They do die really fast though so do not expect them to do well in combat. The fact that Fell Bats aren’t a battleline unit is both a pro and a con. The good thing about it is that the opponent can’t target them to get the battle tactic Broken Ranks. The bad thing about it is that it means they compete with our cheap and fast battleline wolves. Note that they are summonable so they can be put in reserve and you can heal them with Invocation - however you cannot get them back with Endless Legions as they are not Deathrattle or Deadwalker. At only 8.33 points per wound they are a great and cheap utility unit in your toolbox.

Grave Guards are very expensive at 14 points per wound and not very durable so this is the type of unit you want to activate before your opponent gets to swing at them. In other words they are a glass cannon. With that said they do bring the hurt in combat with mortal wounds on 6s when you roll to wound. If you want them to hit even harder, give them Great Wight Blades for damage 2. If you want them to hold the line a little better then give them shields for the 4+ save. A Grave Guard with a Great Wight Blade causes 1.03 wounds on average against an enemy unit with a 4+ save. The same equation for a shielded Grave Guard comes out at 0.74 wounds on average. If you have a Wight King as your General the Grave Guard become battleline which is nice because then you can reinforce them twice and get them to 30 models in a unit. Another good thing about Grave Guard is that they are an optimal target for Deathly Invocation and Invigorating Aura as they are the most elite unit that is also summonable. The fact that Grave Guard can come back with Endless Legions should they be destroyed somewhat mitigates their fragility. And getting back 10 or 15 GG in the backfield of your opponent's territory can really screw up their game plan. The musician's ability is also not to be understated as consistent charges are very important for a unit like this. They are our most reliable source of mortal wounds and are a great target for Crimson Feast, All-out Attack, Vanhel's Danse Macabre and Belladamma’s spell Under a Killing Moon. All in all Grave Guard hit quite hard but are expensive so use them as glass canons and exploit the fact that you can keep them in reserve and summon them later from a Gravesite.

It is quite clear that this unit is not meant to be taken without Radukar the Wolf. They are quite pricey and are basically a mini Grave Guard unit. They could be fine for holding an objective on your backline, but we have better options for that (like 10 skellies). The 5+ ward save is great though especially on models with 4 wounds. The best option for these zombie ogres is probably to take them reinforced and use them as an anvil.

What a weird unit. They have a very mixed damage profile but all in all they are on par with a unit of 10 Deathrattle Skeletons in damage output. Their ability to get d3 models back in each hero phase is nice, but given how bad their saves are it is not likely to help much. They are only 5 points cheaper than 10 Deathrattle Skeletons and are way easier to kill. The re-rolls for charges are an off beat bonus that doesn’t synergize with much. All in all this unit is too expensive and slow to be good chaff, just take 10 battleline skeletons instead.

Vargheists have a similar damage profile as Blood Knights and cost the same per wound. However, they are far less survivable. Their best use is probably to use their Death’s Descent ability and keep them in reserve. When the opponent opens a whole in their backline you can swoop down and cause havoc. Due to their short range on their attacks they are not good in bigger units because it is hard to keep coherency and make sure your models can attack. It is worth noting that Legion of Night gets Vargheists as Battleline. Think of Vargheists as the bigger and scarier version of Fell Bats who are actually capable of killing something once in a while. However, don’t expect them to do wonders with their 10 attacks, instead aim for the weak prey and capitalize on their good movement.

Why is this not a monster!? Right, I had to get that off my chest. The Vargskyr is not cheap at 14.37 points per wound but it has decent saves and damage profile. The most unique thing about the Vargskyr is that it can charge up to 18” instead of the usual 12”, a rule your opponent is sure to forget from time to time. The Vargskyr is an obvious candidate to go hunt for smaller units holding objectives or as a combat support unit that can lend a bit of punch.

The Blood-born do more or less the same as Vargheists, just a bit worse and a bit more expensive (per wound). They have 2” less movement, do not have fly or the ability to deepstrike. Their damage profile is more or less the same but lacks the explosive 6s. The only real reason to pick these are if you’re 30 points short for your Vargheists.


Leaders

With Belladamma you get a lot of magic for your buck: She has +1 to casting and unbinding, can cast two spells and unbind two spells and she also benefits from the Vyrkos’ ability that lets you reroll casting rolls if you run that dynasty. To ensure that she doesn’t get killed, keep a unit of Dire Wolves close that she can transfer wounds to. With her 10” move she can keep up with the Dire Wolves and move around the battlefield where she is needed. She is no powerhouse in close combat so keep her safe for as long as you can and use her magic instead. As a unique unit she doesn’t have access to Universal Spells but she should have enough options in her warscroll spells and Lore of Vampires. Her spell Lycancurse is basically Arcane Bolt on steroids and the additional wolves can definitely screw with your opponent’s game plan such as denying Unleash Hell. Her command ability is very circumstantial but has it's uses when you need to get your Dire Wolves quickly into the face of something. All in all she is a very strong choice but remember to bring some doggos if you pick Belladamma.

Gorslav is cheap (and also the first Zombie hero ever!). A very good choice for most armies as he is the cheapest leader we can get our hands on. However, to really make him shine let him lead a unit of 40+ zombies. Then he becomes really tanky because of his ability: Keeper of the Corpse-Gardens and he adds some offensive output to the zombie unit. If your zombie unit gets destroyed he can also bring them back with his command ability. Dire Wolves are also Deadwalkers which means they can benefit from Gorslavs Arise! Arise! ability and he can pass wounds to them. As a Deadwalker he also debuffs bravery which stacks nicely if he is close to his zombies. So if you have a few points to spare in your list consider bringing Gorslav and his menacing shovel.

Kritza is cheap, a decent fighter and really hard to kill. He is basically a Vampire Lord that you get on a discount because he doesn’t have spells or command abilities. With -1 to hit for enemies in close combat with him and the ability to come back on 4+ every time he dies he is truly a thorn in the opponent’s side. He is a good choice if you want to add some punch to your footslogging units.

Lady Annika has the standard Vampire Lord statline but trades the ability to cast spells and use command abilities for an improved version of the hunger and a 4+ ward save. She is also a bit cheaper than a normal Vampire Lord. She is very much like Kritza but is a bit more reliable but also a bit more expensive. Lady Annika is a good choice if you want a cheap vampire hero on your frontline to provide Deathless Minions and use the generic command abilities. Thus, she is a solid choice if you want to beef up your infantry.

Lauka Vai is almost the same as a generic Vengorian Lord. She costs 5 points more and has a wound more. The biggest difference is that Lauka Vai has a pretty brutal charge ability that can cause a solid amount of mortal wounds. This ability is good, and a considerable upgrade over the vanilla Vengorian Lord. She does have drawbacks compared to the Vengorian Lord though. Her innate spell is more circumstantial and harder to cast and command ability only targets monsters. In addition to this, she is a Unique character which means that you cannot use normal artefacts of power. All in all she is a strong choice but probably a tad worse than the Vengorian Lord.

It doesn’t get more solid than this when it comes to casters. Keep a bunch of zombies close by and the Necromancer rarely goes down due to his Undead Minions ability. Vanhel’s Danse Macabre is a great spell in general but even better when used on Zombies as they have extra pile in range and attacking twice can really bring the hurt in the form of mortal wounds. The Necromancer is reasonably priced and has access to Lore of Deathmages (as the only generic character) in addition to the spells on his warscroll. It is worth noting that he does next to nothing in combat and is very hard to keep alive if you do not bring zombies to accompany him.

P Diddy and homeboys are a weird bunch. You can only take them if you bring both of the units, but in game terms they operate as completely different units with the Prince being his own unit and the Court being a single unit of 3 models. Duvalle is basically a Vampire Lord that has swapped the command ability for a decent buff spell. So on his own he would probably cost around 140 like the Vampire Lord, which means that for the 60 points extra you get The Crimson Court - and the question really is, are they worth it? Probably they are. Seen together the Court has a decent damage output (average 2.08 wounds against 4+ saves) and 4 wounds with a good save. They cannot benefit much from The Hunger as only Gorath has more than one wound. Their movement is good as well. You’ll always want Gorath to be the last model to die as he is half of the units damage output in himself and he has two wounds. The biggest drawback with the court is that they die quickly if your opponent puts any effort in. However, they are quite cheap so it is not the end of the world should they die. So when should you take P Diddy and his backup dancers? Probably when you want a Vampire Lord (and don’t need Crimson Feast) but have 60 points to spare.

Radukar the Beast packs a punch - on average he dishes out 8.32 wounds against enemies with a save of 4+. Being the beast that he is he cannot use magic but instead has a once per game command ability where he summons a unit of 10 Dire Wolves - which is no small thing as it is basically a 135 points discount of Radukar. The summoned Dire Wolves also synergize with his other command ability that triggers on his charge and buffs nearby friendly units. He doesn’t have the best saves but with 12 wounds and -1 to hit him in close combat he can tank a lot and The Hunger and Heroic Recovery will help him heal up. Even though he has 12 wounds he doesn't bracket which combined with his healing capabilities means that your opponent has to kill him completely to avoid trouble. All in all he is a really cheap deal that has good mobility, great command abilities and is a menace in melee.

Radukar the Wolf has a similar profile to the Vampire Lord but costs 10 points more. On his own he is worse than a Vampire Lord as he cannot gain any enhancements and his command ability isn’t as good as the one the vanilla vampire has. He does go up in value if you bring some Korsagi Nightguard and Torgillius… but those units aren’t really exciting either so it probably isn’t worth it.

Torgillius is the right hand of Radukar and as such he can provide extra command points if he is close to Radukar the Wolf (not the Beast). This is nifty, but not the reason you should bring him. He has access to Lore of Deathmages in addition to the spells on his warscroll. Necrotising Bolt is a solid debuff. Unlike the Necromancer Torgillius doesn’t need a bodyguard of zombies as he has a built in 4+ ward save. His attacks are not worth mentioning, but he is a decent wizard albeit a bit restricted. Torgillius is very mediocre on his own but a solid choice if you bring Radukar the Wolf.

The Vampire Lord is our bread and butter leader. It does a decent job at almost everything. In close combat it dishes out 2.29 wounds on average against enemies with a 4+ save, which is not bad at all. For defense the Vampire Lord has to rely on its 3+ save, 6+ ward and The Hunger rule. However, with only 5 wounds it does die rather quickly to any focused effort by your opponent. The Vampire Lord does more than swing its sword around though. It can cast 1 spell and unbind 1 spell and has access to the Lore of Vampires. It does not have a unique spell on its warscroll but you should have plenty of options with the Universal Spells and the Lore of Vampires. The place where the Vampire Lord really shines is in its command ability Crimson Feast. With it you can pick a summonable unit (Black Knights, Fell Bats, Grave Guard, Deadwalker Zombies, Deathrattle Skeletons and Dire Wolves) which gains an extra attack. This is one of the best command abilities in our faction and it is almost worth the points of the Vampire Lord in itself.

The Vengorian Lord is literally a Vampire Lord on steroids (or at least the AoS equivalent). With 10 wounds and a 3+ save that ignores -1 rend it is no easy task to bring it down. Combine this with Amulet of Destiny and Aura of Dark Majesty (Legion of Blood) or Monstrous Might (Avengorii) and you have a leader that is as hard as a rock. The Vengorian Lord has plenty of options when it comes to healing back up: The Hunger, Heroic Recovery, Festering Feast (command ability) and Vile Transference (Lore of Vampires). The fact that the Vengorian Lord is a monster (but not behemoth) is amazing - now you have both heroic actions and monstrous rampage but cannot be bracketed. In close combat the Vengorian Lord causes 5 wounds on average against enemies with a 4+ save which is decent but not amazing. For extra punch you can use Finest Hour, Stomp or Titanic Duel when necessary. The Vengorian Lord is a decent caster and can either go on the offense with Arcane Bolt or Clotted Deluge or buff its already considerable save with Mystic Shield. The only minor drawbacks are the fact that it can have a hard time beating big things in combat and Undeniable Impulse.

Yet another named character from the Cursed City set. Just like most of the other Ulfenkarn characters Halgrim is unexciting. He is mediocre in every sense of the word.

The Wight King is similar to the Vampire Lord except it is cheaper and lacks magic and good movement. The biggest reason to bring the Wight King is to get the Grave Guard as battleline units. His command ability is nowhere near as powerful as the Vampire Lord’s but it does buff the Deathrattle units that you are sure to bring because of him. In total the Wight King is a bit below the bar, and most will pick it for flavor reasons to go with their horde of bones.

This fellow is markedly better than his footslogging counterpart. For only 15 points more you gain great movement, 2 additional wounds and the chance to cause mortal wounds on charges. The last part is quite relevant as the Wight King can either hunt down smaller units on his own or support in an important combat where you need to bring something big down. Remember that as a Deathrattle the Wight King debuffs enemy bravery which stacks with other Deathrattle or Deadwalker units. The universal artefact Arcane Tome is a great option for the mounted Wight King as you get a cheap, durable and very mobile caster. If you want to go heavy on the skellies this Lord o’ Bones is definitely the way to go.


Leaders, Behemoth

The Bloodseeker Palanquin is a good source to both ranged and melee mortal wounds. It has a good damage output but is quite easy to bring down due to its mediocre save and lack of The Hunger. The mobility of the Palanquin is good and you can easily track down whatever prey you need to cause mortal wounds to. Remember that this unit also has access to the Lore of Vampires.

The Coven Throne is fast and hits quite hard. It is not as survivable as some of our other hero options but The Hunger and Shudder makes it pretty sturdy. The Coven Throne has an amazing command ability that buffs offense and defense of a unit within 12”. On top of that it is also a fine caster with access to the good unique spell Shudder that can shut down an enemy in combat. It is probably a good idea to give the Amulet of Destiny to this unit if you decide to bring it. All in all a good unit although a bit overlooked.

Mannfred is built for support: His Sword of Unholy Power and command ability both buff nearby units and if the combat gets too risky for him to stick around he can easily teleport to safety. He is decent in close combat and with 12 wounds, 3+ save, The Hunger and Armour of Templehof he is very survivable, especially because of aforementioned teleport ability. He can cast two spells and unbind two spells and has access to Lore of Vampires AND Deathmages, which is quite the selection. His warscroll spell Wind of Death is also quite strong.

Nagash is by far the strongest unit we can deploy, but he also costs close to 1000 points. He is basically good at everything. He is extremely hard to kill with 16 wounds 3+ save and 4+ ward (and can get wounds back with Soul Stealer). He doesn’t mess around in combat either with a pretty impressive attack profile. But where he really shines is the fact that he is probably the best wizard in the game across all armies. He can cast and unbind an insane number of spells and has huge bonuses to his casting attempts. Oh yeah, and he can cast Arcane Bolt multiple times. You can also be damn sure that your opponent will keep their big important characters a long way from Nagash as he can slay them outright with Hand of Dust if they are within 3”. He knows all spells from the Lore of Vampires and Lore of Deathmages. And his command ability is amazing - it buffs every death unit in your army. Nagash is simply nuts.

Neffy is quick, tough and a good wizard - and she is reasonably priced to boot. Her Dagger of Jet makes her a threat to all heroes and her Mortarch of Blood ability heals her d6 wounds whenever she kills something, so she is hard to bring down. She has access to Mystic Shield, Arcane Bolt, Dark Mist, the Lore of Vampires and Lore of Deathmages - quite the arsenal! Dark Mist is a nifty protective spell that will keep your units alive in the face of high rend. Her crowning jewel is her command ability Twilight's Allure. It creates a protective 12” bubble of -1 to hit in melee against Neffy and her friends. Good stuff. On top of this she also has monstrous rampage which is icing on the cake. All this put together makes Neferata a tough nut to crack and with her amazing movement she can zip across the battlefield and apply pressure where needed.

This dude is the real deal. Vhordrai is expensive but he is worth every penny. With 14 wounds and a 3+ save he is quite tough to bring down, especially because of The Hunger and Chalice of Blood. You don’t have to play Kastelai to bring him, but if you do he benefits from the allegiance abilities making him even more of a beast in combat. He doesn’t even need to use Finest Hour or All Out Attack because he can buff himself with his spell Quickblood (quite odd that they turned the old bloodline trait into a spell though). He gets heroic actions, command abilities, monstrous rampage, can cast spells, is amazing in close combat, has great movement and is hard to kill… Surely that is all that he can do? No, sir! He also has a very frightening shooting attack. A drawback worth mentioning is that Vhordrai doesn't have access to the Amulet of Destiny, so prioritize activating him first. Just for the fun of it I'll mention that he averages around 21 wounds on the charge with Finest Hour and All-out Attack. This guy does it all - and then some. If you have the points for it then bring him.

With 14 wounds, a 3+ save and The Hunger this bad boy is tough as nails. This unit is the perfect fit for an Amulet of Destiny to exploit those 14 wounds. The VLoZD is no joke in combat either (especially if you give it Flaming Weapon). If you are running a Kastelai list you will probably pick Vhordrai and not this, so let’s look at what the other dynasties offer. With Legion of Blood you can give the VLoZD Aura of Dark Majesty to make it even harder to kill. If you go with Avengorii you can pick Eye for an Eye to make it more deadly in combat and in combination with the Cursed Mutation Maddening Hunger the VLoZD is really hard to bring down. If you pick Vyrkos as your subfaction you can go a more magic heavy route and exploit the rerolls for casting you get from The Strength of the Wolf is the Pack. In that case you should pick a Lore of Vampires spell to combo the rerolls with Locus of Shyish. In general there are many ways you can buff your Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon and it all depends on your playstyle. This unit is pricey but worth it because it is tanky, killy and mobile. Don’t forget to use your Monstrous Rampage to either shut down enemy command abilities or cause extra damage in close combat. The biggest downside with this unit is that it is a case of all eggs in one basket - but the pure toughness of the VLoZD makes it a less risky gamble


Behemoths

The Mortis Engine is similar to the Bloodseeker Palanquin but is quite a lot cheaper and is not a hero. The Mortis Engine thrives in the midst of enemy lines where it can cause the most mortal wounds with its wail and reliquary. However, don’t count on it sticking around forever since it is quite easy to bring down - and the opponent will try to do this as having it roaming around will wither their army round after round.

The Zombie Dragon is a solid monster with a good ranged attack. It is reasonably priced and has amazing movement. A weakness that the dragon shares with the Terrorgheist is that it cannot heal (except for Maddening Hunger). The good news with the Zombie Dragon is that it doesn’t deteriorate that much when it starts taking wounds. The Pestilential Breath is a really hard-hitting ranged attack that can threaten big blocks of units and heroes alike. Remember that The Zombie Dragon is obviously an amazing choice in Avengorii since it becomes a battleline unit, but equally as important it gains access to the mutation Maddening Hunger. This mutation is the dog’s bollocks - it slays (no roll required) a single 1 wound model within 3” of the dragon in each combat phase, and on top of that the dragon heals 1 wound. Getting reliable healing on a 14 wound monster is good stuff but there is even more to it. It is not your opponent that chooses what model is slain, you pick it. This means that you can take out the Champion (which stops them from ordering commands to their unit), the banner or the musician (which often have good abilities like the Way Pipes of the Tree Revenants). Also, if the unit you attack is strung out on a line you can break their coherency by picking a model in the middle of the line. The monster keyword is important in AoS 3.0 and especially so for as long as we play in the Realm of Ghur. It gives you monstrous rampage and you can often gain additional victory points by completing battle tactics with monsters. Just remember that your opponent will score 1 victory point by killing you Dragon. Luckily the Zombie Dragon is a tough unit to bring down. The huge base of the Dragon is both a pro and a con. It is a con in the sense that it can be hard to fit the base where you need it due to other models and terrain. The benefit of the big base is that you can use it to zone out areas of the battlefield that you don’t want your opponent to have (at least without a fight). The Zombie Dragon is a good unit and even more so if you bring it in your Avengorii list.

The Terrorgheist is very similar to the Zombie Dragon, so instead of repeating myself I will focus on the differences. The Terrorgheist also has a ranged attack but it functions differently from a normal attack sequence. Instead of rolling to hit and wound you simply roll a single die and add 6 (this deteriorates as the T-bat loses wounds) then you compare your result with the enemy unit’s Bravery. For every point you exceed the Bravery with that unit suffers a mortal wound. So this is a really swingy ability as it will absolutely wreck some armies (like Gloomspite Gitz) and not do much against others (like Death armies). This ranged attack has synergy with Deathrattle and Deadwalker units so remember their debuff to enemy bravery as it can make a big difference. All in all this ranged attack is probably worse than the Pestilent Breath of the Zombie Dragon since it is less reliable and gets worse as the Terrorgheist takes wounds. One area where the Terrorgheist is way better than the Zombie Dragon however is in its maw attack. Their attack profiles are the same but the T-Bat has a nasty ability called Gaping Maw: If you roll a 6 to hit you cause 6 mortal wounds instead of rolling to wound. With 3 maw attacks you’ll on average do the 6 mortal wounds every second combat phase - which is amazing. Another, albeit smaller benefit the Terrorgheist has is that when it dies it will cause d3 mortal wounds to all models within 3” of it (yes also your own). The Terrorgheist is as good as the Zombie Dragon all in all and your choice really depends on what fits your army the best and whether or not you expect to fight against low or high bravery armies.

Subfactions
To be determined.

Spells
To be determined.

Allies
To be determined.​
 
Last edited:

Oppenheimer

Vargheist
May 26, 2013
617
I love the corpse cart, +1 to cast is great and I find that people ignore it as it's so unthreatening.

Also, the grave guard are my favourite unit in the new book. They hit so hard and are summonable.

Other than that I agree with all your choices! Great information. Thanks!
 
  • Love
Reactions: The Sun King

The Sun King

Moderator
Staff member
True Blood
Aug 22, 2012
4,058
Copenhagen
Thanks Oppenheimer ! Great input. I agree that it is great that Grave Guard is summonable, but I'm very hesitant to give them a higher ranking due to their price tag. As for the corpsecart I might reconsider and put it on three stars (for the lodestone at least). It is quite cheap to be honest and I might have underestimated the +1 to cast.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Oppenheimer

Unas the slayer

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 1, 2017
1,152
Northern Italy
Thanks Oppenheimer As for the corpsecart I might reconsider and put it on three stars (for the lodestone at least). It is quite cheap to be honest and I might have underestimated the +1 to cast.

Honestly, both the corpsecart versions offer pretty solid buffs and are relatively cheap for what they are worth.
Their only problem is that they are really situational.
Against armies with poor ranged threats (3/4 of undead armies, ironjawz and similar), they are just great... otherwise, your opponent will require a minimal investment to remove them.
I would gladly pay 100-110 pts for 2 additional wounds and a 5+ save.
 
  • Like
Reactions: The Sun King

The Sun King

Moderator
Staff member
True Blood
Aug 22, 2012
4,058
Copenhagen
Honestly, both the corpsecart versions offer pretty solid buffs and are relatively cheap for what they are worth. Their only problem is that they are really situational. Against armies with poor ranged threats (3/4 of undead armies, ironjawz and similar), they are just great... otherwise, your opponent will require a minimal investment to remove them. I would gladly pay 100-110 pts for 2 additional wounds and a 5+ save.
Great input! Keep it coming so we can fine tune the handbook.❤️ The very poor movement of the zombie wagon is also a big issue. Due to the limited range of the buffs and debuffs you need to place it centrally and you cannot easily relocate to adapt to your opponent. For the moment I will not change the overall rating of the CC but add in the text that it goes up in value if you can exploit the buff to casting.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Unas the slayer

The Sun King

Moderator
Staff member
True Blood
Aug 22, 2012
4,058
Copenhagen
The handbook has been updated. Fixed some typos, added an introduction to the rating scale and updated the entries of Deathrattle Skeletons, Dire Wolves, Black Knights, Fell Bats, Grave Guard, Belladamma, Gorslav and Radukar the Beast.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Unas the slayer

About us

  • Our community has been around for many years and pride ourselves on offering unbiased, critical discussion among people of all different backgrounds. We are working every day to make sure our community is one of the best.

Quick Navigation

User Menu