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LEGION– BLIGHTED OGRUN 52 FORCES OF THE LEGION–BLIGHTED THEME FORCE
80 FORCES OF KHADOR–THE ARMORED CORPS THEME FORCE
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
VOL. 5: VULTURES VULTURES GATHER, FALL FALL 605 AR
ESCALATION TO WAR by Douglas Seacat; “Silence of Death” by Josh Colón, “Court of Kings” by Matt Goetz
“The Fire & the Forge” is a feature that examines pivotal moments in the recent history of western Immoren and its groups battling for supremacy or survival. It is intended to allow newer readers to become familiar with what has come before and to serve as an engaging reminder to older readers.
scalation to War, War, the rst series i n the Fire and the Forge, will be told in si x parts and goes back to the era of WARMACHINE: Escalation, covering a pivotal turning poi nt starting at the end of 604 AR and going through 605 AR. These conicts kicked o six brutal years of t urmoil and war that reshaped the region and saw the rise of powerful competing factions.
THE BRITTLE CYGNUS In the immediate aftermath of the Llaelese War, there was very little time for the involved parties to regroup and adjust. Khador did not relent but promptly pushed its armies to occupy and secure Llael as well as to transition into an assault on Cygnar’s northern border. This strategy maintained the pressure on Cygnar, which had just withdrawn from Llael and had hoped for some respite to lick its wounds and take stock of its losses. This was a glorious time for the Khadorans, as they celebrated what they saw as the righting of ancient wrongs and the restoration of their glory as the Khardic Empire. In less than a year, their queen would crown herself empress. But for Cygnarans, it was a time of grim reckoning. They were forced to swallow the bitterness of defeat in Llael, where they had failed to defend their ally.
The Cygnaran rush to send its armies north had been a massive undertaking involving the rapid redeployment of thousands of soldiers, which severely strained the nation’s infrastructure and disrupted its three most vital armies. Cygnar’s First Army in the north was most directly aected, but the stress was felt elsewhere as well. The Second Army guarding Caspia was diminished just as the Protectorate of Menoth declared independence and began lashing out with its armed forces. Meanwhile, the Third Army out of Highgate faced an unprecedented rise in Cryxian raids along the Broken Coast. By the fall of 605 AR, the kingdom was being assailed on all sides. During this period, Warmaster General Turpin relied more than ever on the army’ ar my’ss warcasters to mai ntain Cygnar’s defensive strength by adapting to the rapidly evolving situation. It took time for scouts to conduct reconnaissance, compile their ndings into reports, and send them back to Caspia to the scout general, warmaster general, and king. By the time deliberations were completed and fresh orders sent, the situation in the eld might be completely dierent. Warcasters had to make their own calls based on the best information they had, often on the spur of the moment. This could lead to dierent elements of the army operating out of sync with one another and with the chain of command. It took the steady hand of seas oned veterans to maintain calm, order, and some semblance of a cohesive plan.
Meeting this challenge was easier for some than for others. Commander Coleman Stryker, thirty years old at the time, was already a seasoned military veteran with twelve years of experience under his belt, but he was still quite young for his rank and responsibilities. Serving in wartime proved to be very dierent from serving during relative peace. Prior to the Llaelese War, it had been more than twenty years since Cygnar had seen its last major conict—the Scharde Invasions, which began when Stryker was nine years old and ended when he was thirteen. Stryker’s career began with the Lion’s Coup, during which a hated tyrant was overthrown and replaced by a benevolent sovereign. All of Stryker’s prior militar y engagements were small in scope and morally unambiguous; while he had experienced death and loss rsthand, he had always been able to understand the context of those deaths and the purpose they served. But in the war in Llael and its aftermath, this became impossible. Like many other senior ocers, he was forced to confront the horror of senseless brutality per petrated not by nightmarish horrors but by regular men and women in uniform.
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
MAJOR CONFLICTS AND EVENTS Autumn, 605 AR
1 Subversive Cryx ian Attacks Goloven 14th–24th Asphyxious works to unleash
the Balebrand on Cygnaran soldiers and fosters famine in
northern Cygnar by attacking
farms and food stores.
2 Thornwood Kriels Settle Glimmerwood Throughout Doloven Kriels led by Madrak Ironhide are driven
from the Thornwood and settle temporarily in the Glimmerwood.
3 Eldritch Attack on Sul-Menite Shrine Doloven 9th Goreshade attacks an obscure
Protectorate shrine and retrieves corpses of fallen priests for necromantic interrogation regarding the Harbinger.
4 The Umbral Umbral Cairn is Prepared Khadoven 18th–22nd Starting on the 18th of Khadovan, Asphyxious initiates the activation of the Umbral Cairn, a site of occult power in the Thornwood. The High Reclaimer is drawn to this vicinity on the 22nd by a vision, prompting the recovery of the souls of several Exemplar knights.
5 Massacre at Hakin’s Hakin’s Hill Hill Khadoven 22nd Commander Coleman Stryker attempts to intervene when Khadoran deserters and cleansers of the Protectorate of Menoth set upon a refugee camp northeast of Corvis.
6 Fall of Vladimir Tzepesci Khadoven 27th Great Prince Tzepesci ventures into the northern Thornwood Thornwood to confront a Cryxian threat and is overcome by banes at a barrow emitting a necromantic fog.
THE DROSS OF MERCY Near Corvis, Cor vis, Khadoven 22nd, 22nd, 605 AR The Bloodstone Marches had begun to cool in late autumn, but they remained a place ill-suited to traveling under the noonday sun, even as winter neared. Commander Coleman Stryker was always startled by how rapidly the climate changed after crossing the Black River to step into the outskirts of the Marches. It was as though the red sands drew all the moisture from the air, and all the while the sun above glared down with magnied intensity, making him sweat despite the relatively cool air. Ol’ Rowdy was with him, the Ironclad striding smoothly while scanning the horizon with its glowing eyes. Aside A side from Rowdy, Rowdy, the warcaster was essentially alone—as alone as someone of his position could be. Behind him was a fuel wagon with its seasoned driver and a few hands to help with the essential needs of his temperamental ghting machine, but he had eschewed any soldiers on this trip. He was keenly aware that he was technically guilty of an unauthorized absence during this trek, not that anyone would reprimand him for it. His orders had been to stop in Corvis to refuel and repair his battlegroup before meeting up with reinforcements to take back to the northern Thornwood. Thornwood. Given the Khadoran escalation of hostilities, they needed him to return as quickly as possible. The work on his other ’jacks would take a few days, however, however, as would collecting the men and supplies sent up the river from Caspia. Enough time for a small excursion, one that was at least arguably connected to his obligations as an army ocer, though it was a task he really should have delegated. The mood in Corvis had taken a decidedly sour turn. It was hard not to attribute any frowns and scowls sent his way on its streets to the part he had played in abandoning Merywyn. No one liked being on the losing side in a military conict, and there were now many destitute Llaelese in Corvis, all with reason to hold him to blame. They did not care that the decision to withdraw had come from the king and his generals. For everyday people, warcasters like Stryker were the public face of the army, the heroes they lauded in victory and blamed in defeat. The withdrawal had been one of the most disheartening moments in his mil itary career. He well remembered the i mpotent rage rage on the face of Ashlynn D’Elyse as she watched the Khadoran lines pul l back to let the Cygnaran Army depart Merywyn un molested. It It had felt like they had entered into an unwholesome unwholesome pact, with Llael
Just hours after Stryker had reached Corvis, he had been approached by a beleaguered beleaguered sergeant of the Cygnaran Reconnaissance Service. He was clearly a man looking for support after failing to nd it among the other higher ocers. “You see, my unit’s been ordered south. They want us looking into some Menite troop movements movements nearer Caerly’s Crag. Anyhow, Commander, we didn’t didn’t get to ni sh our previous patrol. A shame, as there was work to do. Got some lthy reds lurkin’ about these parts somewhere, but didn’t have time to nd ’em.” The sergeant had gone on to describe reports of Khadoran deserters in the vicinity, ones allegedly behind recent troubles at swampie villages near the ruins of Fort Ryker. These Khadoran soldiers-turned bandits were likely on the run f rom their own superiors, forced to pillage to survive, and they had been seen moving south. “Seems like something we should take care of,” Stryker said. “Your superiors didn’t assign another team to the task?” “Everyone’s tied up, Commander, most of ’em up near Fellig or Northguard.” The sergeant spit to the side. “Bandits are low priority. We’re We’re told to ignore ig nore ’em until they do something. All well and good, but there’s vulnerable people out there.” “What would you have me do, Sergeant?” Stryker had asked. Despite his irritated tone, he was troubled by the report. It was easy to imagine the harm a few dozen rogue Winter Guard might m ight do once let o their leashes. The Morridane sergeant looked embarrassed, wiping his brow with his cap. “Well, look, I know this is below your pay grade, but I had hoped to check on the refugees up by Hak in’s in’s Hill. The deserters might be headed that way. Any chance you might send someone by? They’re a sad lot. Been through a lot already.”
F&F INTEL: KHADORAN DESERTERS The Khadoran conquest of Llael had a darker side, one that went largely unaddressed by the High Kommand. During the conflict and
number of opportunist soldiers acquired a taste for the spoils of war. The Llaelese countryside was aggressively plundered, and multiple small townships were essentially erased off the map after experiencing the brutality of soldiers or former soldiers. This problem eventually spread beyond that kingdom’s borders. Some Winter Guard kompanies deserted entirely, essentially becoming bandits armed with military weapons and still wearing their old uniforms. A number sought refuge along the fringes of
“I’ll see what I can do,” Stryker had assured him. “Go on and return retur n to your team.”
the Thornwood, the Glimmerwood,
“Sure, sure. Thank you, sir.” sir.” The sergeant had skulked o, his shoulders slumped. He was too disciplined and too polite to say it, but he took the warcaster’s words words as empty platitudes.
preyed on anyone who could not
It was the man’s sad, defeated posture more tha n anything that convinced Stryker to check on the refugees personally. Given how hectic things were in Corvis and how overworked the local ocers were, he had decided any other men he allocated would be missed. Meanwhile, he would have been cooling his heels doing nothing, waiting for his machines to get xed. So without making a fuss, he had picked up
patrols sent after them.
and other wild regions in northern Cygnar and southern Llael. They defend themselves, such as the rustic peoples living in outlying homesteads or farms. The largest of these bandit groups were bold enough to intercept small military
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
and a single fuel wagon, then began the march. He hadn’t bothered to inform Nemo or the generals, knowing they would have insisted he send someone else. Given how how low he had been feeling si nce Merywyn, this errand was the rst time he'd felt good since they’d marched back from Llael. Ensuring the safety of a few destitute refugees was the least he could do. He was often recognized, and it might make some of these people feel better to see a ranking warcaster checking on them—a tangible sign their lives l ives mattered. mattered. Stryker emerged from the shadows of the overhanging trees on the edge of the Widower’s Widower’s Wood beyond Corvis. The blasted landscape stretched out before him, stark and uninviting. With its scrub brush and low twisted trees, the region was not entirely barren but still considered too bleak to settle. O to his right he saw a roiling disturbance along the nearest dunes— likely one of the Marches’ frequent dust storms. He put on his goggles just in case. He knew he was close to the area that some of the refugees from the Llaelese War had settled—those unwilling to join the throngs already setting up crowded camps outside Corvis’ gates or pressing through the crowds to nd an unoccupied corner in the city’s slums. He could understand why some had decided to set up camp here instead, several miles from the city, in unclaimed lands beyond Cygnar’s border. But this also meant they were exposed. The young warcaster felt an itch between his shoulder blades, though his apprehension was based on nothing yet. Then he saw Ol’ Rowdy’s Rowdy’s head come up, and they both heard the echo of a distant report. Gunre, without question. Several sporadic shots followed. Stryker cursed under his breath and mentally urged the warjack toward a small copse of trees between their position and the shallow gulch where the refugees had supposedly set up their encampment. He turned back to the driver of his fuel wagon, a grizzled man who had served as a trencher many years ago. “Stay back,” he said to the older man. “But keep your rie handy, handy, just in case.” The driver nodded and laid his military rie across his lap. The water boys with him looked scared but also relieved they were being told to stay put. put. Stryker could feel their eyes upon him as he and Ol’ Rowdy rushed ahead toward the sounds of violence. —●— Stryker saw at once that a brief skirmish had taken place, one that was already set tled. A hundred yard s away, away, a sad collection of tents and improvised sheds squatted. Wispy trails of smoke rose from several cooking res. The only thing he could hear at rst was the weeping and wailing of families amid the shock of what had been a swift and brutal attack. Several bodies were strewn across the reddened soil along the perimeter of the tents, where a few armed guards had likely been posted. Dropped ries lay near the hands of the fallen.
Dozens of northerners in torn and dirty Winter Guard uniforms were advancing into the camp. ca mp. Several of the nearest moved to recover ries from the slain, while others fanned out among the tents with t heir own weapons at the ready. ready. The leaders of the deserters shouted orders in stilted accents, demanding that all food and anything else of value be surrendered to them. A young boy, boy, perhaps ten or eleven years year s old, emerged from one of the tents and with a strangled cry stumbled toward a bleeding body. body. The nearest soldier ruthlessly k icked him back. That Winter Guard then pointed his blunderbuss at the child, perhaps thinking he had been trying for his father’s rie. Stryker drew his disruptor pistol and raised it with an involuntary shout as Ol’ Rowdy ran forward on heavy metal legs while his steam engine churned. Several of the Winter Guard heard and looked up. They spotted the warjack rst and began to raise the alar m, pointing frantical ly. ly. Gleaming blue runes surrounded Stryker’s pistol as his magic augmented the weapon. Guided by the warcaster’s will, the shot struck true despite the range, hitting the Winter Guard’s midsection. The echoed report was matched by the soldier’s own weapon, as he had managed to squeeze the trigger before Stryker’s round struck. The Khadoran staggered and turned with a surprised look on his face before falling lifeless near the boy, boy, who also lay still, bleeding from a gaping chest wound. Stryker felt a surge of rage. He was not satised shooting them at distance; he yearned to deliver a more visceral death by the edge of his sword. But rst he had to cross the intervening ground. He reloaded his pistol and red again, taking out another looter as he emerged from a tent with his arms full. As these were refugees, the deserter was likely holding ragged clothes and broken dishes, perhaps a few scraps of molding bread or hard cheese. To To steal what little these people had left was monstrous and suggested these soldiers had lost their last shreds of conscience. Even with all Stryker had seen of the Khadorans in Llael, he had not lost the capacity to be surprised by the enemy’s enemy’s cruelty. Realizing that a Cygnaran warjack was nearly upon them, the rest of the northerners dropped their plunder to draw or raise weapons. Several turned to re at Ol’ Rowdy, Rowdy, but their bullets did little more than chip paint from an already war-battered exterior. The warjack’s eyes glowed with bright red re, a nd steam vented with a shriek that answered Stryker’s shout, picking up the warcaster’s anger as if it were the machine’s own. Though the ’jack’s ’jack’s mind was relatively simple, Stryker could feel Rowdy’s desire for violence as a pure and powerful thing. It knew these tattered people in their tents to be friends and non-combatants—a key signier to a military cortex, and the closest its mind could apprehend of innocence. It understood the need to exterminate those who would bring harm to anyone identied as such. Ol’ Rowdy’s hammer crashed through a pair of Winter Guard at the edge of the camp before they could dive out of the way, sending them ying. But its advance was brought up short by
an awareness of the many friendly entities ahead, amid the uncertain territory of weak and fragile tents. Rowdy could not commit to carnage as it would have liked, since every step might bring peril to those they had come to protect. The ’jack’s next steam-vented noise expressed frustration more than anger. Stryker was close enough to see the nearest ramshackle hut was abandoned, so he gave Rowdy permission to stomp through it to reach the next deserter. Ol’ Rowdy’s punch shattered that man’s skull, which oered no apparent resistance to the warjack’s oversized metal st. Stryker holstered his pistol and took Quicksilver’s long hilt rmly in both gauntleted hands. He clicked the switch to empower its mechanikal blade, creating a shimmering mirage along its length that would make it sharper than a surgeon’s scalpel. The rst three Winter Guard unfortunate enough to be standing within reach were quickly hacked into a pile of twitching meat. The greatsword thrummed with power; designed to open gashes in thick steel plates, its impact on the bodies of relatively lightly armored Winter Guard was horric. Where Stryker’s sword touched, esh parted and life ed. That said, there were dozens of Khadorans and only one of him. Those looters who had already pushed deeper into the encampment turned and red at Stryker, correctly surmising him to be the primary threat, despite t he size of Ol’ Rowdy. Rowdy. The warcaster was moving quickly, however, using Rowdy to screen his advance, and many shots hit the warjack or missed altogether. Others impacted his power eld and shattered into sprays of sparks, with only one round hitting but not penetrating his breastplate. This display of near invulnerability to small arms re eroded the deserters’ will to ght, and the nearest sergeant—who appeared to be leading them—cast down his rie to beg for surrender. “Don’t “Don’t kill ki ll us!” u s!” he shouted, even as Ol’ Rowdy Rowdy stepped in his direction. The sergeant fell to his knees. Stryker reluctantly checked his swing as the sight of this abject surrender dampened his enthusiasm for retribution. Responding to the warcaster’s thoughts, Ol’ Rowdy Rowdy stopped as well. Stryker drew his pistol again and gestured sharply to the others, pointing to the ground, and reluctantly they began to put down their weapons. They looked nervous and twitchy and there were too many to watch all at once. Despite his power eld, Stryker knew the heavy blunderbuss used by most Winter Guard could penetrate his armor with concentrated re. He had startled them, and they had likely expected him to be escorted by soldiers. Now he was unsure how he would manage so many prisoners alone. He might have to deputize some refugees to get
the Khadorans to step away from the encampment toward a spot where he could see them better. That itchy feeling at his back returned, some twinge of his battle instincts he had learned to trust. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw that one of the Winter Guard who had made the motion of dropping his rie had not actually relinquished it. But even as Stryker noticed him, that soldier shifted his attention beyond the warcaster, and his eyes widened. Stryker wondered what madness had gripped the man to think a single rie could be a threat. But he could not resist turning his head to follow his enemy’s gaze, and he saw something that made his blood run cold. Swiftly advancing upon the eastern edge of the encampment was a line of armored gures he recognized as Sul-Menite soldiers—cleansers of the Protectorate, their amethrowers readied. Stryker’s weapon lowered involuntary while his mind balked at imagining how this was possible. He recalled the dust cloud he had interpreted as a storm. He thought he might have heard, amid the other gunshots as he charged the Winter Guard, the distant sound of a rie from behind—perhaps his wagon driver warning him of the approaching foe? It had gone unheeded.
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
The cleansers opened the valves of their amethrowers to let Menoth’s Fury pour forth, unleashing a tide of ame that set an entire row of tents and shacks ablaze. They advanced, their silhouettes inhuman and cold, their faces hidden by their helmets as they put re to everything in reach, every man, woman, and child defenseless before them. The anger that had lled Stryker before was nothing compared to the outrage he felt now. now. Ol’ Rowdy was already moving i n front of Stryker as a wash of ame sought to engulf him. Fire licked along the machine’s arms and torso as it swung its quake hammer in a wide arc, smashing through several cleansers and sending them ying end over end to land unmoving a dozen yards back. Others it stomped underfoot, wading into them like a charging bull. Stryker red with his pistol and screamed incoherently as he closed to impale the nearest cleanser with Quicksilver, driving the blade to its hilt through the man’s chest. Stryker stared into the helmet’s eye slit, shaped like a Menox. In those eyes he saw nothing with the spark of humanity. Instead, the Menite died content, lled with blind devotion, convinced of the righteousness of his cause. The very name “cleanser” was an aront. Their re brought nothing but death and ruin. Each of these deluded soldiers believed those they burned were better o erased from Caen, their souls left harrowed as they tumbled into Urcaen. It was a hellish landscape as orange and yellow ames leapt around Stryker. The raging bonre hungrily devoured the squalid refugee homes and their inhabitants both. People stumbled from their tents, dying in agony, in a nightmare tableau worse than any he had ever witnessed. The Winter Guard who had surrendered were set are as well, even as Stryker moved to interpose his own body between a cleanser and a refugee with a child in her arms. She stumbled past him through the perilous ames, seeking escape not for her own safety but for the innocent she held. With a surge of arcane power, Stryker sought to shield all of those who had not yet perished, letting it ow outward to bestow an aura of rune-gleaming magic and hopefully buying them a few extra heartbeats to get beyond the killing inferno.
The cleanser turned as Stryker came upon him, tossing his amethrower away. away. He tore the helmet hel met from hi s head, and the look of fear and confusion on his face made it clear his zealous certainty had broken. He was surprisingly young, his features not unlike some of the Cygnaran soldiers in boot camp yet already corrupted by his hateful faith. He held up his hands and sought, like the Winter Guard before, to beg for his life. “Mercy!” he cried. “I surrender!” surr ender!” Stryker could still hear the screams of those burning as the encampment became a funeral pyre. Smoke and heat choked his nostrils. It was the ash of the fallen that he sucked into his lungs. They had been given no chance to ask to be spared. “No,” “No,” Stryker Str yker said atly. atly. “Mercy ends here.” Abruptly he lunged forward, as if shoved from behind, and Quicksilver pierced the cleaner’s torso, pinning him to the ground. Stryker held the hilt and looked into the man’s eyes as the life left him. He felt no regret whatsoever, only hot rage rising to a roiling boil he knew must sustain him. He had been baptized here, in this re, r e, such that he would would never again be the same. He would not be fooled into thinking his enemies were human. They had given up that right. It fell to him to show them what their own actions had wrought.
AFTERMATH: STRYKER’S ULTIMATUM The massacre at Hakin’s Hill went all but unnoticed by the public, receiving no mention in any broadsheet and only minimal treatment in military reports. This was likely a result of the fact that the tragic event happened beyond Cygnar’s borders and involved many victims already presumed dead from earlier conflicts. The massacre did have a profound impact, however, on its foremost surviving witness— Commander Coleman Stryker. After this incident, the warcaster traveled to Caspia and there confronted King Leto Raelthorne. He surrendered his sword and resigned his commission after pleading with the king and his generals that they must accept certain grim realities of war. He said he would take up his sword again only if he were given leave to employ the ruthless tactics required to defeat the kingdom’s villainous foes. This audience had a significant impact on King Leto, who recalled Stryker after severaldays of weighing his words. Refusing the warcaster’s resignation, Leto avowed that Stryker had spoken
His sword ew as he hacked through the cleansers, his teeth gritted and bile rising in his throat. He did not see the fate of the woman and her child as the wind swept the re higher; it rose like a curtain around him. He had to hope she had made it, that she had run fast enough and by some miracle would nd refuge far from here.
harsh but necessary truths. The king granted broad authority to
Shielding his face, he followed Rowdy through another wall of re to chase down the last few cleansers. Rowdy made quick work of those he could reach, but one stumbled and fell as he sought to escape the warcaster.
Raelthorne IV’s disbanded Inquisition. Several inquisitors had been held as prisoners while others were wards of the Church of
Coleman Stryker as part of his promotion to the special rank of Lord Commander, which allowed him to operate outside the normal chain of command and do as he sees fit to protect the nation. One of the first measures undertaken by Lord Commander Stryker was to launch a mission to purge eastern Cygnar of suspected traitors thought to be aiding the Protectorate of Menoth and its hierarch. Stryker gained access to the surviving members of Vinter
Morrow after being granted limited sanctuary upon repenting their misdeeds. This effort was the beginning of one of the darker chapters in recent Cygnaran history, one that would see many innocent Cygnarans imprisoned amid escalating hostilities with the Protectorate, culminating in the Caspia-Sul War. Indirectly, Stryker’s decision to free former inquisitors also set in motion events leading to the Second Cygnaran Civil War.
THE DARK DARK LANDS L ANDS
SILENCE OF DEATH
There is no question that 605 AR saw a drastic and alarming increase in Cryxian activity and sightings, which would prove to be only the start of far worse things to come. Among those who noted this escalation very early were the Morridaines of the Thornwood and the Umbreans of southeastern Khador and western Llael. In the remotest battleelds and in the wilder domains of Umbrean lords, Cryxians began to emerge and despoil the land. When confronted, they retreated into a maze of tunnels connecting to the great necrofactoriums built beneath the Thornwood. This network of tunnels, many of them rst built by a cephalyx hive dwelling deep beneath the forest, allowed the Cryxians tremendous exibility in traveling unseen throughout the region, scavenging corpses and other useful materials wherever the other nations engaged in battle.
Somewhere in the Thornwood Forest, Forest, Khadoven 22nd, 605 AR
Each battleground was, for Cryx, a fertile and precious resource. The war front along the northern edge of the ancient forest served as an eective distraction for Cryxian deprivations. Necrotech mining rigs were established wherever ghting had occurred and bodies lay either unclaimed or hastily buried beneath the mud and blood-churned blood-churned soil. soi l. This eciently mechanized harvest of death was new and unheard of, and it allowed the Cryxian iron liches and lich lords to mass-produce fresh mechanithralls at a tremendous rate, creating entire armies seemingly from nowhere. Alarming as this development was, the necromantic potential in the region went beyond simply an ample supply of fresh bodies. The most learned occultists understood that the region between Khador, Llael, and Cygnar had long been steeped in the energies of death. In truth, mechanithralls were the least signicant of the fabricated war materials generated here. Across Umbrey and the Thornwood lay countless centuries of unending strife and bloodshed, dating back to the ancient Kingdom of Morrdh, pioneers in necromancy long before the Gift of Magic, as well as the carnage unleashed by the Khardic Empire in its attempts to subjugate the Black Ring of Umbrey. In this region lay buried numerous unholy relics and accursed barrows, the tainted graves of the restless dead whose spirits were bound to Caen, twisted by spite and unforgotten grudges. From such burial sites, certain Cryxian masters had been able to plunder special weapons and assets, including old and powerful corpses capable of becoming formidable banes. Furthermore, Asphyxious Asphyxious and others of his ilk experimented with weaponizing the latent energies of death itself, nding ways to coax malevolence from the soil and transform it into poisonous mists or a corruption capable of tainting stored grain. The most notorious notorious manifestation of these eorts in the autumn of 605 AR was the so-called Balebrand, a subtle taint that poisoned stores of food across the region. Many of those who unknowingly consumed this poison had their thoughts and dreams corrupted. Some committed terrible deeds, turni ng on friends fr iends or family, while suering unpredictable periods of madness linked to the phases of the moons. This combination combination of disease and enchantment left many people shaken, their faith undermined when it seemed they could not trust their own minds.
With a crackle of ame and the hiss of rotten esh on burning steel, the High Reclaimer broke another thrall in half. Ignoring the deep call of exhaustion spreading throughout his aching bones and muscles, he turned to face another pair of oncoming undead, deftly sidestepping as they swung their oversized mechanikal sts. Timing their movements, movements, he thrust the aming end of Cremator at the eyes of one of the abominations, blinding it, as he dodged its haphazard swings. With surprising speed, the second mechanithrall landed a solid blow to the warcaster’s sternum. Even with his power eld deecting some of the force, he knew he was injured; he felt the familiar pain of bruised r ibs already accompanying each breath. He parried another blow from the mechanithrall, then put all his weight into an arcing swing to send the undead warrior toppling on its back. Before it could regain its feet, the warcaster threw the blinded one on top of its comrade with an almost casual shove. With the same ease he raised Cremator high and, using all hi s considerable considerable strength, skewered both mechanithralls upon it. The undead writhed in a grotesque mimicry of pain as the righteous ames of Cremator consumed them. Stepping back to allow the re to do its work, the High Reclaimer took stock of his surroundings. The early afternoon sun gave this part of the central Thornwood a serene quality. Without the dozen or so charred bodies of the undead littering the clearing, he might even have called it beautiful. But Menoth taught the faithful to be wary of t he allure of nature, as the blasphemous blasphemous touch of the Wurm pervaded every part of the untamed wild.
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
F&F INTEL: RECLAIMING SOULS The
Protectorate of Menoth is among the most enigmatic of sacred traditions in the Iron Kingdoms. Considered an extension of the priesthood of t he Temple of Menoth, reclaimers are little understood by outsiders, and their unflinching regard can make even devoted battle
Reclaimers embrace a lifestyle of extreme asceticism and self-deprivation,
surrendering everything that would define them as individuals. It is believed that no one chooses to become a reclaimer; rather, they must experience a calling, one that compels them to irrevocably commit their lives to this path. Their vow of silence is an extension of the belief that all of their actions and thoughts belong to Menoth, and each stands ready to carry out the Creator’s will when divine instructions are received. One
vital duties is to serve as psychopomps, escorts for the souls of the faithful who use their power to ensure those who perish do not linger on Caen but
It was an altogether dierent evil that had sent the High Reclaimer on his current cu rrent quest. Visions of the undead committing sacrilege in the Thornwood had roused him to action. At once, he took leave from his pilgrimage in southern Llael and walked the many dicult miles to thi s place. In the six days and nights since his arrival in the Thornwood Forest, he had been almost constantly tested by by the elements, elements, by by the limitations of his esh, and by t he various creatures and denizens that called it home. As he looked back to the northeast, he could see in his mind’s eye the many places where he had encountered those who attempted to impede his sacred mission. He thought on his battles against small Cygnaran scouting scouting teams, Tharn hunting parties, even a pair of creatures known as cephalyx. But as he neared the center of the forest, the undead had begun to engage with him the most—a sign that he was on the right path.
out anything written in the old books, but to the eyes of the undead the chamber was more than adequately illuminated.
It was the horrors of Cryx that he sought. With each step, he came closer to the unholy site where they congregated. Menoth had not seen t to bestow upon his servant the details of the Nightmare Empire’s plot, but he did provide the High Reclaimer with glimpses of what he was to do. A small unit of faithful Exemplar Knights had fallen in righteous battle against the undead, and the seniormost among them had witnessed something—something that should not be. The knig ht’s words words must reach t he Harbinger. The High Reclaimer could not relay those words himself, his tongue being forever silenced by the oaths of his order, so the knights’ souls must be shepherded to where the faithful rest in Urcaen. That way, way, the Harbinger Harbi nger could make contact and learn what she must.
“Tread carefully, Asphyxious. Wit does not become you,” the lich lord said.
In his heart, the High Reclaimer feared he was already too late. Still, he hoped that in guiding the knights on their way to Urcaen, they would in turn guide him through the darkness and danger to come. —●—
will pass to Urcaen, from there to travel to the City of Man to serve Menoth for eternity. This can involve tending to the souls of the fallen at a battlefield where a hero of the faith has perished. But reclaimers also occasionally feel compelled to seek out specific
the living whom they deem— ostensibly because of their direct connection to Menoth—to be needed in Urcaen. What other faiths might call murder is for them a sacred responsibility.
“Your various enterprises have not gone unnoticed, Asphyxious,” said the ethereal vision of Lich Lord Thalassina in Asphyxious’ mind. Even from Skell, the Cryxian capital city many hundreds of miles away away, her tone carr ied the sting st ing of subtle subt le threat. “You would do well to err on the t he side of caution.” The iron lich stood in the center of what his more sentient servants referred to as his private workshop. All around the periphery of the large circular room stood tables and bookshelves piled with ancient tomes, parchments, and strange mechanikal objects. Specimen jars, blown glass vessels, and bubbling uids cluttered a large space at the far wall directly behind him, hi m, home to his alchemica l eorts. With only the dim glow of gas sconces at each cardinal direction, the living would have had trouble making
A deep, dark re lit the single eye socket of the iron lich—a physical eect of the powerful communication ritual, pioneered by Thalassina herself, which temporarily linked the two undead in a way that let them speak across great distances. This magic drew on principles similar to t hose that allowed a lich to commune with a skarlock, but it was a strain on both parties, and they did not use it frequently. As usual, Asphyxious maintained the neutral, obliging tone he employed when speaking to a superior. “A “A most wise counsel, Lord Thalas sina, and one I shall heed when I next create another outpost for our armies under the very noses of our enemies,” he replied.
“As you say. I meant only that risk is unavoidable when one is given such monumental tasks to complete alone.” As he spoke, the iron lich’s clawed hands moved as if they had a mind of their own, gesturing commands to ve subordinate skarlocks in t he room. The undead attendants moved with speed and unerring precision, coming inches from colliding as they maneuvered throughout the chamber, as their master’s will kept their courses true. The skarlock Aramax held up a map of the northern Wyrmwall Mountains with various locations circled, and Asphyxious pointed to the one farthest f rom both a symbol of t he Convergence Convergence of Cyriss and s ome notes indicating a site of power for the Circle Orboros. Then, Caligari presented a large parchment covered in the latest schematics for a prototype hel ljack, which Asphyxious approved with a motion. Likewise, Lychus, Noxilena, and Morturion all oered their master various documents and plans for review and endorsement. Even as he conversed with the lich lord responsible for the Nightmare Empire’s Empire’s foreign aairs, Asphyxious continued to oversee oversee his sk arlocks, his movements movements not unl ike that of a spider. spider. “We are all quite aware of your many successes on the mainland these past few centuries,” Thalassina continued. “It is why you have been allowed such leeway to pursue your own . . . curiosities. Speaking of which, where is your eldritch? I have an errand I would like to entrust to him.” “Unfortunately, I already sent him on an urgent assignment, some months ago, but be assured that upon his return, I shall endeavor to make him available anon,” Asphyxious said, mentally cursing the eldritch’s extended absence. “But thou didst
“Have we encountered any other Protectorate forces of late?” Asphyxious asked the room. He could sense the eagerness of the ve skarlocks to be the rst to answer.
not call this meeting merely to inquire after my underlings but rather regarding negotiations with the cephaly x hive. I am happy to relate that, owing to thy skillfully orchestrated initial contact with the creatures, I will soon reach an agreement that will ensure our interests for the foreseeable future.” Asphyxious hoped that deecting the credit would be enough to conceal his growing desire to end the conversation quickly.
“My, my,” said Noxilena with feigned disappointment. “As usual, Vociferon’s Vociferon’s enthusiasm has h as done more harm t han good.”
“I am pleased to hear you have made progress. The cephalyx will prove themselves to be capable allies.” Thalassina paused, seemingly distracted by something in her vicinity—one of her own servants, no doubt. “I will wi ll leave you to your schemi ng. But remember, you are bei ng watched.” watched.”
“What a fool,” added Aramax.
Before anything furt her could be said, the lich lord broke contact. contact. Asphyxious had no time to ruminate on her words. A far more pressing danger loomed on the horizon. “How close is he? Hath he discovered the ruins?” Asphyxious asked his skarlocks, maintaining a detached tone in spite of the growing sense of dread in the corners of his mind.
Asphyxious ignored their eorts to cur ry favor. Normally, Normally, he would applaud Vociferon’s initiative, but now was not the time. He cursed hi mself for having sent his favored skarlock to parley with Master Necrotech Mortenebra Mortenebra on hi s behalf. “Who hast knowledge of where he stored the soul cages containi ng these knights?” “I do, my lord!” replied Caligari, who immediately went to fetch them.
“Last report had him engaging our sentries less than three miles east o dais number four,” said Caligari. “We have not heard any more from them, so we assume they have been destroyed.” A reclaimer’s presence in the Thornwood could be disastrous for Asphyxious’ plans. He knew that dispatching the lone man, while a simple matter in itself, would have dangerous consequences. Reclaimers shared a connection with their god that was stronger and more direct than that enjoyed by ordinary priests of their fait h, and the man’ ma n’ss death would no doubt draw a substantial portion of the Protectorate military to the region. A few weeks from fr om now, now, such an event would be welcomed, but the timing was critical. It was too early, not yet time for the harvest of souls. As members of the Reclaimant Order were versed in the properties of souls, there was the possibility one might be able to discern some of the functions of the Orgoth device Asphyxious and his forces sought to harness. This in turn could lead to determined interference at an inconvenient moment. If only Goreshade had completed his mission al ready. ready. The fact that Asphyxious had not heard anything from that accursed elf added much to the iron lich’ l ich’ss displeasure. displeasur e. He took a moment to focus on the matter at hand, allowing all other distractions to recede from his mind, and soon had a ash of intuition.
“As a matter of fact, Vociferon took it upon h imself imsel f to dispatch a group of Protectorate knights less than a month ago,” replied Morturion quickly. “I believe he led the squad of bane warriors personally, collecting their souls for you, my lord.”
Within moments, Asphyxious had one of the soul cages in hand and was using his arcane sight to examine the energies contained within. The Menite souls were of remarkable quality. The purity of purpose marking each soul must make their captivity all the more agonizing. One in particular resonated with a certain power, its light vibrating in a way that suggested outside inuences or certain special gifts, such as an awakening to magical power. If he had more ti me, he would have enjoyed studying that one closer. Vociferon had outdone himself. Asphyxious was a connoisseur of special souls, having mastered the deeper magics that could be accomplished through them. To avoid the reclaimer ’s attention, however, he might be forced to relinquish them. The ancient lich had long ago learned the value of taking risks as well as surrendering assets when holding onto them might imperil greater works. “Lychus, “Lychus, see t hat the corpses of t he exemplars are brought to Perdo Perdo at the fourt h dais. Noxilena, bring me a Stal ker. I have a plan.”
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
—●— Through their shared connection as master and servant, Perdo appeared in Asphyxious’ mind, and the skarlock thrall listened to his instructions with feverish intensity. Perdo held up the soul cage containing the knights in one hand while gesticulating wildly with the other as he spoke. “Of course, Lord Asphyxious, I will spread the souls inside this cage across this clearing and await the Menite intruder. Their energy will wi ll be as breadcrumbs to a mouse.” Perdo Perdo punctuated his speech with a grating laugh.
F&F INTEL: BACK FROM THE DEAD
“Hast thou delivered the corpses?” Asphyxious asked.
While rarely performed and even more rarely successful, both the Church of Morrow and the Temple of Menoth have sacred rituals to attempt to restore the dead to life. In both faiths, these rites involve a petition for miraculous intervention. In most cases the dead stay dead. Such unlikely miracles are more likely to succeed with the recently fallen, before the soul passes to Urcaen. Members of the Reclaimant Order have had the greatest success in restoring such individuals, an extension of their power over souls. The historical annals, however, record
successful resurrection of those who were not recently fallen, some of whom remembered what they saw on the other side. It is from these that the only firsthand accounts of Urcaen have been documented. Such resurrections are exceedingly rare, and almost all have been performed by the most holy and revered leaders of the clergy, such as exarchs or primarchs of Morrow or hierarchs of Menoth. And some members of these faiths believe that to even attempt such a miracle is morally wrong—an act of hubris that invites the wrath of the divine.
“Indeed, my lord. The bodies and thei r weapons. I will also have them spread across the clearing. I must say, these bodies are remarkably well preserved. They may as well be sleeping. Well, if you ignore all the bloody wounds—” “Yes, “Yes, yes, very good, Perdo. Perdo. Remember the plan. Provide sucient resistance so that the reclaimer gets what he needs and leaves. Do not allow him the luxury to inspect the site too closely, but leave him alive,” Asphyxious said. “As you wish, my lord,” Perdo replied before Asphyxious ended their contact. Asphyxious then connected his mind to the Stalker bonejack he had dispatched, which which now sat hidden in the dense tree line at the periphery of Perdo’s clearing. Through this link, he could see Perdo standing in the center of the fourth dais, its smooth, black stone surface covered covered in Orgoth iconography. iconography. Two other skarlocks and a score of bane war warriors riors also stood in the clearing. On the ground, dozens of soldiers—Cygnaran and Khadoran both—lay dead, their souls oating serenely a few feet above. Perdo and his team had orchestrated the slaughter as a way to test the dais’ response to soul energy. Asphyxious hoped that the inclusion of the dead exemplars in this scene did not appear too staged, lest it raise suspicion in the reclaimer’s mind. For nearly an hour Asphyxious waited, watchi ng patiently through the Stalker’s eyes as Perdo and the other skarlocks collected souls. Then, as Perdo mindlessly reached out behind him to draw in another soul, a grave marker in the shape of a Menox speared the grass just between the soul and the skarlock. After a moment of confusion, Perdo noticed the soul he had summoned would move no closer; instead, it was drawn to the marker. A large, hooded gure carrying a aming mace walked across the clearing to stand next to the grave marker, a growing number of souls drifting toward him. Though he remained silent, his bearing said all
Perdo Perdo gathered what arcane power p ower he had while motioning motioni ng to his banes to attack the reclaimer. With a sinking feeling of recognition, the iron lich watched from afar as the silent man marshalled the soul energy within himself into a torrent torre nt of raw power. In an instant, the entire clearing was awash with ames. Asphyxious recoiled from the searing light. He could almost feel the heat of the re through the connection to his warjack. I see, he thought, It is this one. Not just any reclaimer, but the High Reclaimer. Perdo had never stood a chance.
—●— Though ash and smoke darkened the world around him, the souls of the faithful illuminated the High Reclaimer’s path. He walked to the nearest knight, unburnt by the righteous res of Menoth, and placed his palm pa lm upon the t he dead man’s brow. brow. Silently, he began the holy rites of reclamation, attempting to usher the exemplar’s exemplar’s soul to Urcaen. He made his hi s way around the clearing, praying over each of the fallen knights. The usual sense of calm that accompanied the ritual never came to him, only a growing sense that he had failed in his sacred mission. Just as despair threatened to overtake him, he saw one of the exemplar souls still lingering nearby, bright and gleaming. He followed its light to its for mer vessel, a young woman. Her armor designating her as the unit’s ranking warder. With a deep breath, the High Reclaimer bent and focused on her. As he prayed, he was shocked to sense the miracle of resurrection unfolding before him. He had never before been allowed to bring back someone this long dead. And yet the young young woman’s woman’s body and soul united as easily as lighti ng a candle. Her wounds wounds knit before his eyes, and her soul’s light spread upon her skin like the glow of a new day’s dawn. As the young woman gasped the rst breath of her new life, all the pain and suering the High Reclaimer had endured these many weeks vanished from his memory, replaced only with gratitude toward the Creator. He felt honored to have served as the conduit for such a miracle. —●— For Cyrenia Ibn Sohar, resurrect ion proved to be equal parts excruciating and soothi ng. The desire to cry out was overwhelming, yet instinct and di scipline forced her to focus on her breath. Eyes Eyes darting, she could see nothing but a haze of smoke and a dark gure leaning over her. It took her a moment to recognize him as one of the Reclai mant Order, here to guide her s oul to Urcaen, no doubt. She had truly died. Though she could not remember how, she hoped it was a death worthy of an exemplar. Cyrenia tried to speak, but her head throbbed with pain. Could the dead get headaches? She felt strangely aware of her body, which she thought she would have left behind. She tried to stand, but her her movements movements were were sluggish sluggish and awkward awkward,, as if her her limbs
had fallen asleep. There was no doubt she was still corporeal. Her esh prickled everywhere with pain, and her legs nearly gave out. She stumbled, but the reclaimer steadied her gently, with the concerned attentiveness of a parent for a toddling child. “Thank you,” she said. “I’m not dead, am I? At least, not anymore.” anymore.” The reclai mer made no response, merely keeping his arm under her to maintain her balance. Only when he did not reply did she remember who she was in the presence of. As the smoke cleared, he turned toward a nearby patch of ground. Following his gaze, she saw dozens of bodies. Soon she could discern the uniforms of several: Cygnarans, Khadorans, and to her dismay, what appeared to be the remains of Cryxian warriors. Seeing these brought a ash of memory, of hissing shapes shrouded in darkness, tearing at her with barbed axes. Then she saw the body of one of her fellow exemplars, and the memories rushed back to her. A pack of banes had ambushed her and her knights as they scouted a region of the Thornwood. She ran to the nearest knight and cried out, “Martus!” Looking around the clearing, she saw the remains of her exemplar brothers and sisters among the dead. “They all fought so bravely,” bravely,” she whispered whisper ed to herself, her voice heavy with sorrow sorr ow.. She turned tu rned to her si lent companion. “Why was I brought back and not them? I don’t understand.” The reclaimer only stared back in silence. “I died last, cutting my way through as many banes as I could. But then…” She turned and stood in front of the reclaimer, her words coming faster as she recalled something of vital importance. “I saw it! A vile and unholy structure. I saw it nearly pull in the souls of Martus and Tayla. It almost pulled in my own before that wretched skarlock captured us. We must destroy it at once. It is an abomi nation.” —●— Asphyxious cursed his luck. Of all the recla imers it could have been, it had to be the th e most powerful powerf ul one, the t he one who was also al so a warcaster. When the smoke cleared, he was not surpris ed to nd the entirety of Perdo’s retinue reduced to ash. What did surpris e him, however, however, was seeing that the High Reclaimer was not alone. One of the fallen k nights, a young woman, now lived and was speak ing to t he warcaster. That should not have been possible. p ossible. Fascinating . . . Perhaps facilitated by my delivery of the soul? No, he had to focus. There was no time. The iron lich commanded the Stalker to move silently around the cleari ng, to get close enough to hear the pair’s exchange but never let ting them out of h is sight. sig ht. Yet as the lit he bonejack was still making its way toward toward them, the exemplar exemplar woman picked up a sword and began walking south. In the direct ion of the soul cairn. No , Asphyxious Asphyx ious thoug ht. She couldn’t couldn’t know. Could she have seen it somehow?
Before she could get far, the High Reclai mer put a hand on her shoulder. shoulder. He said nothing, but both the iron l ich and the
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
exemplar knew what the gesture meant. We must leave. The woman turned to face the reclaimer and seemed to lose her composure, engaging in a heated, if one-sided, argument. The iron lich could not leave anything to chance, even the slim possibility that the knight could change the High Reclaimer’s mind. In a moment of inspiration, Asphyxious guided his Stalker around the clearing at full speed, randomly disturbing bushes and shaki ng tree branches as it went. It was crude, but it worked. The illusion that a larger Cryxian force was on its way seemed to deter the young exemplar. She turned from the silent warcaster, gathered up the relic blades of her fallen comrades, said some quick foolish Menite prayer, and left the clearing with the High Reclaimer, heading east. Asphyxious had the Stalker follow them as far as hi s mental range would allow, then ordered it to return and cut o their link. He sat down in an ornate throne-like chair and declared to his subordinates, “The threat has been handled. The reclaimer took the bait.” “Success!” Caligari proclaimed. “Congratulations, my lord!” Noxilena crooned. “Let’s not be too hast y. We still stil l have much to do!” Lychus said. Asphyxious ignored the prattle of his skarlock servants. He picked up a scroll and quill and began jotting down notes regarding soul collecting and the evident expansion of reclaimer power he had witnessed. Celebration was an indulgence for which ambitious beings like he had no time. Joy was a distraction meant only for mortals, rest a luxury only the living could aord.
AFTERMATH: THE TEMPLE GARRODH
COURT OF KINGS The northern norther n Thornwood Forest, Forest, Khadoven 27th, 605 AR Tendrils of strange black fog crept up from the forest oor. They moved moved like hunting snakes, winding among the dark branches to spread up into the sky. The autumn moons glowed in the clear night, etching the edges of the fog with delicate traces of light. Vladimir Tzepesci, Great Prince of Korskovny and recognized by some as prince of all divided Umbrey, Umbrey, stood atop Zerkova’s Zerkova’s Hill staring at the rising ngers of darkness and whispering a soft word of prayer. This creeping mist was not natural, and looking on it made his blood prickle with cold. His lineage was blessed with the gi ft of sorcery, and he sensed the touch of fell magic in the night air. Something evil was about to take place. The dark prince stood at the perimeter of his encampment, facing the great Thornwood Forest. For weeks, Cygnarans from Fellig had attempted to use the forest as cover to strike at the supply lines of southern Khador feeding the armies in Llael. Since arriving at the forest’s edge, Vlad had sent platoons into the thick brush to ush out any enemies hiding in the trees and drive them into the open elds to the north and west. There, his heavy uhlans trampled them under iron-shod hooves, and Widowmakers picked o any survivors as they tried to return to the trees. It had been joyless but necessary work, and it took them far from the front lines of battle in Llael. Vlad saw exhaustion on the face of every soldier he passed, tempered by understanding that such brutalities were simply a part of their eort to eventually reunify Umbrey. One did not need to take pleasure in such a task. Any pride would have to be derived simply from the completion of their work. —●—
What Asphyxious referred to as “the soul cairn” in the Thornwood was, in fact, one part of the greatest temple ever built by the Orgoth, which had been buried but left largely intact. Sited on a fulcrum of necromantic energies originally exploited by the Lords of Morrdh, the Temple Garrodh proved to be an exceedingly powerful soul cage, capable of trapping and harnessing an infinite number of mortal souls. This machinery offered Asphyxious the possibility of limitless power, and he foresaw that it could facilitate his dreams of apotheosis. Asphxyious’ schemes would not be easily achieved. Mastery of this complex would require time as well as carnage on a horrifying
Almost an hour after rst spotting the black fog in the forest, while his Winter Guard companions baked rye cakes on hot stones set next to cooking res for the night’s nal meal, Vlad witnessed a second portent. A white owl with eyes like two golden wedding bands glided silent ly overhead. The bird was a harbinger of the grave, a sign of endings. One of its soft feathers came loose as it passed over him, oating down to land delicately in his waiting hand.
scale. Shortly after the High Reclaimer’s investigation, Asphyxious engineered a great battle on these grounds between Cygnaran, Khadoran, Menite, and Cryxian forces. The bloodshed awakened the power of the site, but this was just the beginning. For his plan to succeed, Asphyxious needed to lure the Harbinger of Menoth to the fully excavated structure, then ritually sacrifice her to steal all of the souls protected within the City of Man in Urcaen. It was for this purpose he had originally dispatched Goreshade to the Protectorate. Yet other great prophetic forces were at play as well, each trying to shape these events which threatened to imperil the very future of the Iron Kingdoms.
“Your signs are not subtle, Old One,” he mused, twisting the feather between thumb and forenger. “Something troubles you, my Prince?” asked Karlof Omirov as he approached. Omirov had fought alongside Vlad for many years and was as close a friend as the great prince could allow a subordinate to be. “Only the thought of eating your cooking,” Vlad said with a somber smile, letting the feather fall from his hand. He and Omirov were walking together back to the camp when a crashing sound came through th rough the trees. Soldiers dropped their meals to scramble for their weapons. weapons. A sentry posted near
the edge of the camp stumbled backward into the relight, his eyes and mouth open wide in silent shock. Vlad pushed his way through the startled Winter Guard, telling t hem to hold their re. A Khadoran scout lurched into the relight. His armor was pitted and tarnished. Thin lines of black and angry crimson webbed his exposed skin, and the blood vessels in his eyes had burst. Every breath the man took made wet wet sucking sounds a nd left him trembling with weakness. The scout extended a hand to his countrymen and collapsed, seemingly having used all his willpower to make it this far. “Stand back,” Vlad ordered. He did not know what aicted the scout, but he would not risk exposing the soldiers to it. They gave the warcaster room as he knelt next to the wheezing scout. Vlad placed a hand on tthe he man’s back. “Tell “Tell me, what did th is?” The scout’s breath bubbled with blood, staining his lips. Each word was a struggle. “Cryxians. At the Bloodroot. In a black fog.” The Bloodroot was an ancient battle site in the t he Thornwood where thousands of great warriors had been interred. It was the resting place of champions and past kings. If the Cryxians had indeed taken over the place, the honored bodies buried there might be added to the undead ranks. The scout spent his last breaths describing horrors lurking in the fog. His descriptions matched the Nightmare Empire’s soldiers Vlad had confronted before. before. Finally the man died, st ill tryi ng to convey convey the danger in the Bloodroot. “Have sentries posted near this body until dawn. If it rises, destroy the corpse and burn what’s left. Otherwise, bury him with honor,” Vlad said, still kneeling. If there had been a way to know the scout’ s cout’ss name or unit, u nit, he would have ordered a message sent to his commander in recognition of the sacrice. As it was, the scout s cout would be yet another of the t he ongoing war’s nameless dead. “In Menoth’s name,” whispered Omirov. Om irov. Vlad looked up. The dark cloud had swollen while t he scout spoke and now pressed at the border of the forest. As he watched, the fog plunged from the trees. Wisps at its edges curled to him like beckoning ngers. Where it crept along their
trunks, the trees’ bark became like ash, crumbling to leave bone-pale wood gleaming in the night. “Black sorcery,” sorcery,” Vlad said, “and the humors of death in the barrows. They must have have joined to create some kind of necrotic miasma.” He rose as he spoke, look ing around t he camp. To To the east the fog had already spread over the open eld, causing dry autumn grass to blacken and shrivel at its touch. Omirov opened his mouth to speak, but a screeching noise within the woods cut him o. An unearthly, painful sound, the cry of a wraith or specter howling before the hunt. “Get out of here,” Vlad said. His command fell on deaf ears. His gathered men still gaped at the dark forest. He turned on them, raising his voice to break their shock. “Move! This is a foe you cannot face. Your very souls are in peril.” He unsheathed his sword and unbuckled his scabbard, letting it fall to the dirt. He would have no need of it. “My lord, we stand beside you no matter what,” an Iron Fang said, his face like slate. Vlad spun on the man. “You would gladly give your soul to Cryx, then? You would leave your wife and children a shambling corpse to call husband and father? Listen to me! I order you to report to Kommander Krati ko at Khybreski! Inform her what has come to pass here.” If his words did not convince the soldiers, the growing rage on his face must have suced. Good. The soldiers could not aid him any further. The poisonous fog would slay them before they even reached the Bloodroot’s cairn, much less whatever Cryxians waited in the dark forest. “Karlof,” Vlad said, “come here.” “Yes, “Yes, my pri nce.” nce.” Omirov Omir ov matched Vlad’s pace as he rushed r ushed to his steed Vsada and grabbed a scroll case of ivory and gold tucked into i nto a saddlebag. “This scroll. Ensure Kommander Kratiko receives it,” Vlad said.
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
“Of course, my lord,” Omirov said. He paused, chewing on his next words. “Should some of the men not join you?” “No. You You are to nd Sorscha and follow her orders as you would my own. She will guide you as I have in the past. Gather my soldiers and join them to hers. There are dicult choices ahead for her.” Though Though he doubted it, Vlad hoped for a moment he would be able to join Sorscha again. He did not k now what destiny planned for him in the Bloodroot. “Tell her that I will see her again. agai n. Now go, as fast as you are able. The cloud must not overtake you if I fail. If that happens, there will be no one for you to serve, ser ve, except perhaps the Dragonfather.” Dragonfather.” Vlad clasped Omirov’s forearm to say goodbye. His friend saluted him a nal time, turned, and bellowed orders to abandon the camp. Vlad slapped Vsada on the anks to s end the warhorse galloping ahead of the eeing soldiers. The great prince turned to face the oncoming mass of black vapor. It billowed and owed toward him as he advanced, moving from a walk to a run. Vlad lled his lungs with pure air one last time and entered the darkness. —●— The rst step was the hardest. As he willed himself to keep moving through the unnatural wall of fog, Vlad’s skin burned with a thousand bee stings. st ings. The black mist crept through the cracks of his armor, and everywhere it touched came alive with pain. The great prince ground his teeth against the agony and rushed on, allowing it to ebb into the back of his mind. Vlad saw his armor and weapons bleeding threads of smoke into the air as the fog ate away at them. Had they not been relics imbued with great magic, they likely would have crumbled to dust.
Running through the forest was not much easier. The fog obscured any trails through the trees, and more than once he stumbled as the ground dropped away beneath him into a shallow ditch or streambed. Half-blind and aching from the growing pressure in his lungs, Vlad pressed forward. Before long the need to take a breath was too much for him to bear. Rather than gulp down the necrotic poison in the ai r, Vlad looked inward and formed a spell in his mind’s eye. Sorscha had told him once how she viewed the complex series of runes as a kind of arithmetic, a pure order of correct and incorrect combinations. To him it was closer to poetry or storytelling. In the right order the runes owed; there was a music and rhythm to them. He called up a familiar series. A sudden wind whipped around his body, body, stripping needles from nearby branches. The wind blasted the miasma back for a moment, giving him a space in which he could breathe. The air was blisteri ngly cold, but he was able to draw in a fresh lungful of ai r that momentarily eased the pain i n his body. Vlad kept his mind on the spell, letting t he winds stay with him as he kept running. Without the wind spell he never would have reached the Bloodroot. It took him the better part of an hour to make his way to the ancient burial site. Along the way he heard the noise of foul things moving in the darkness—the metal clanking of steam-driven mechanithralls, the predatory hiss of stalking undead. Great knots of them lled the forest, thralls of all descriptions with haphazard machine parts bolted into their festering meat. As he neared the barrow of the dead in the Bloodroot, Vlad cut through the Cryxians like a reaper through autumn wheat. He could hear them massing behind him as he ran, calling to others of their kind.
—●— The ancient tombs rose out of the fog l ike a si lent city. The stone vaults had become overgrown in the many centuries since their constr uction, and towering trees gripped them in twist ing root and branch. Some S ome had collaps ed utterly, now mere pi les of stones buried beneath countless seasons of dead leaves and dry needles.
semicircle, not yet moving to stop him. But then the nearest, a tall gure wielding a broad Kovosk-style axe, suddenly came at him.
The great prince turned and ran, ignoring his attacker. Rushing for the vault, he drew on the strength of his bloodline, summoning all the might and rage of his ancestors. Glowing runes ringed his body and cast a brilliant blue-white light in the darkness. With power coursing through him, he Vlad entered the graveyard with his sword brought Skirmisher Skirmi sher against the stone arch of the Skirmisher held at a high guard. Five main vaults vault’s vault’s door in an overhand slash. The magic sword ringed the inner yard of the Bloodroot, each leading cleaved and shattered the keystone, and the entire to underground chambers containing the dead. His archway crumbled, taking heavy blocks of the eyes icked from the gaping entry of one mausoleum ceiling with it. The structure collapsed in on itself, to the next. The doors had been bee n broken inward by sending a blast of dust and foul air over Vlad as some great force. Black miasma poured out of the the stones blocked o t he passage. The toxic ow open vaults, coalescing to ll the air with fog so thick emanating from it slowed to a trickle. that even his wall of wind could not hold it back. The tall bane charged him. It was faster than he The great prince let t he spell fade. It would no expected and came at Vlad with a slash of its axe. He longer aid him, and he needed to focus all hi s will turned to intercept the strike, catching the weapon on the task at hand. He endured the pain of the below its head. Vlad should have been quicker, but fog as it closed in around him, trying to keep from the poisonous air was stealing his strength. breathing breath ing too much muc h of it in. St ill, ill , harsh tendri ls He bulled past the bane and made for another vault. slipped into his lungs, causing hi s breath to rattle He would turn h is attention to t he undead once he’d he’d painfully. With slow, cautious steps he approached stopped the spreading miasma. the nearest vault to his left while scanning his surroundings for threats. A bane with a skull broken like a tilted bowl moved to intercept him with its spear, thrusting the weapon Before he could reach doorway, Vlad heard the at his heart. hear t. Vlad’s parry was slow, slow, and the point p oint sound of dry leaves crumpling beneath something’s grazed and skipped across his breastplate. He tread. Figures began to emerge from the vaults. Six knocked the haft aside and rammed his knee into in all, these desiccated corpses in baroque armor the bane’s chest in passing, the power in his blood wielded an array of s pears, swords, and axes. The sending the undead warrior ying back and opening exposed bone of their skulls had deep slashing the way to a second vault. runes scratched into them that welled up with a sickly emerald light matching the unnatural glow Vlad had sealed the second and third tombs when a in their hollow eye sockets. Blackness dripped from spasm of coughing wracked his body. body. He dropped to their bodies like tattered robes, a veil of shadow that one knee, holding himself up by leaning his weight merged with the toxic fog. on his sword. Something wet welled up in his lungs, and he coughed out a spray of ne black mist. While “Breathe deep, Umbrean,” one of the banes said. Its he struggled to his feet, the banes closed on him. voice rasped, dry as old parchment, in an archaic dialect of his native language, which Vlad knew only Two came at once, and he blocked swords from both from tomes. The bane wore a king’s tarnished torc sides. The strength in each attack was immense, around its neck that clinked as it advanced. leaving his hands numb. The sound of ringing of steel and Vlad’s grunts of exertion lled the graveyard. He All six were adorned in funerary splendor, had to backpedal over broken ground until his back ornamented like beloved warrior-kings. Their scraped against a cracked stone monument. weapons, though ancient, still had gleaming edges that suggested magic. These were not common banes. One bane overreached, and Vlad lopped its head from its body before turni ng to impale the second “You “You died a noble death once, bane,” Vlad said. “Let with a at thrust. The blow did not kill the cr eature, me remind remi nd you how it felt.” but it let him h im use us e his sword lik e a lever to wrench wr ench The bane pointed its sword at him, then whispered a it o its feet. Its skull smashed into the rui ned soft command. The others fanned out, weapons ready. masonry, cracking like an egg. Vlad pulled h is blade free fre e and went for the t he fourth four th vault, but t he Vlad faced them as best he could, still moving for fog was taking its toll. His feet d ragged like a man the vault. The banes spread out in an ever-growing half-drunk.
F&F INTEL: BANE KINGS Most
employed by Cryx are terrifyin terrifying g but deliberately crafted necromantic abominations.
commonly created by recovering a maddened soul that has been lost to the yawning gulf between Caen and Urcaen and fusing it into a worthy ancient warrior’s corpse. The dead flesh remembers the fighting prowess it once had in life, while the deranged soul brings the will to harm the living and a cold intelligence capable of tactics and discipline, if properly commanded. The
refined by necromancers like Lich Lord Tenebrous and the eldritch Goreshade but were first discovered through encounters with spontaneously generated banes amid ancient barrows and crypts. Greatest of these banes are the ancient kings who perished to violence with their ambitions yet unclaimed, those who engaged in barbaric depravities while alive and whose souls fell into the void but remained linked to their rotting flesh after death. They managed to pull themselves back to Caen by sheer will empowered by their madness and hatred. Patient, cunning, skilled with their weapons, and sometimes possessing untold powers of darkness, such banes are truly formidable. Fortunately, they are also rare.
THE FIRE & THE FORGE
The spear carrier ru shed him again, its weapon poised for a thrust at his back. Vlad spun, hurling a spell of winter wind like a thrown dagger. The magic sliced a clean slash th rough the fog and cut l ike a sword through t he bane’s bane’s forward leg, pitching it to the soil. Another blast tore its arm fre e, leaving it writhing in place. Turning from the banes once more, Vlad brought down the arch of the fourth vault. Only one remained. Two of his opponents moved to block his path, while the third grabbed his pauldrons and spun him around. It swung its mace at his chest, too fast for him to react. The blow crumpled him, and he dropped his sword. Another blow came, aimed at his head. Vlad rolled rolled away away from from the impact, impact, which he could feel as it dented the soft ground. The great prince drew his dagger Ruin and struggled to stand, using the blade to climb up the bane’s leg as he pulled himself up. By the time he was upright he had stabbed the creature many times, nishing the job with a thrust t hrough the largest rune on its skull. The bane’s bane’s spirit winked out out with a ash of green ame. ame. Coughing deeply, Vlad picked up his dropped sword. The nal two banes awaited him. The one with the axe stood slightly forward, the other behind it holding a longsword ready. ready. “You will not stop me from putting an end to this,” Vlad said, spitting out the taste of blood. The bane with the torc hissed, “You will join us. You are a ne warrior.” “Better than you,” Vlad said, and charged. He leapt over the low swing of the axe meant to lop o his leg, punching the hilt of Ruin into the bane’s jaw as he landed. One side of its mandible popped free and hung loose as it turned on him. The axe crashed onto his left pauldron, driving him to his knee once more. A second swing came at his face, but he blocked it with his dagger. Weakened Weakened by the corrupting fog, hi s blade shattered as it deected deected the blow, blow, and the axe clipped him on the jaw instead of splitting his brow. He hurled himself up, tackling the bane and slamming it into the ground. A sharp pain smashed through his ribs as the other chopped its sword into his back. He blindly stabbed backward to drive the bane away, then reversed his grip and thrust Skirmisher down into his fallen opponent’s skull. The bones crumbled from the impact, and the bane’s body went slack.
The sword sank until the hilt pressed against his armor. Vlad screamed as he felt metal grinding on his bones, as the blade erupted from his back. Hot white ashes clouded his vision, but the bane had come within his reach. “Enough wit to dress for the occasion,” Vlad said, and seized the bane’s torc with both hands. The old bronze was thick, but the great prince’s fury was great. He bent the ends of the torc inward, past each other, and kept bending. The circle of bronze drew tighter and tighter until it closed around the bones of the bane’s bane’s neck. He pulled it like a garrote unt il the bane’s neck let out a crunch, pulled more until its head came free from its body with a nal dry crack. As the bane fell, it pulled its sword free, allowing blood to spurt freely from f rom Vlad’s wound. wound. He was weak and lightheaded as he picked up his own sword. Vlad was ready to sit on the steps of a nearby vault and wait for the end, which wouldn’t be long. There was no way he could escape the miasma in ti me. Already his ngers were numb, his vision grey ing at the edges. Blood loss and poison had done him in. But the Cryxians had other plans. His lengthy battle with the banes had allowed many to gather outside the graveyard. Either pursuing him through the forest or drawn by the sounds of the ghting, they had come. Now Now they began to enter, a great throng of misshapen bodies twisted by necromancy and machines. Vlad gripped his sword in one hand, tried to staunch the ow of blood from his chest with the other, and moved unsteadily to the center of the graveyard. As long as he had life in him, he would hold the horrors back. They would not befoul a ny more of the noble dead in this place. The last heir of the t he Tzepesci line stood alone, broken but not beaten. beaten. The Cryxians came for him.
AFTERMATH: DEATH DENIED There is little question Vladimir Tzepesci expected and was perhaps even resigned to perishing amid the swarm of undead he encountered at Bloodroot. His death was all but certain, and as he was not seen or heard from for over six months, there were many Khadorans who mourned his passing. For those already inclined to view the Tzepesci line with suspicion—tied by rumors to powerful sorcery and unorthodox Menite beliefs—his reemergence was viewed as sinister or at least unnatural. Even some who praised his
Vlad whipped around to hurl a blade of wind at the fth and nal tomb, tomb, putting all hi s strength into the spell. It tore through the air and smashed into the stones, and the vault came crashing down.
heroic sacrifice fighting fighting the undead were unsettled by his return to the land of the living.
The next moment, his nal opponent rammed its sword into his chest. The weapon pierced the ancient a ncient armor and slid into Vlad’s esh. The bane forced him down, the sword scraping against the ragged hole in his steel cuirass and his ribs. Vlad dropped Skirmisher and gripped the bane’s blade with both hands to hold it back.
Zevanna Agha when he returned. Therefore it is commonly assumed, correctly, that the Old Witch of Khador had a hand in keeping his
“You “You die here,” the bane h issed, grabbing grabbi ng Vlad’s Vlad’s shoulder to press the sword deeper. “Another “Another kn ight with more courage
The great prince has refrained from speaking about what transpired in Bloodroot and its aftermath, but he was in the company of
death at bay. He had been badly injured, and it was only by her unique skills that he was nursed back to health. While in the company of this unusual patron and savior, he repaired his ancestral armor, and he melted down and reforged Skirmisher and the fragments of Ruin to create the greatsword Dominion. Vladimir and this sword would play an instrumental role in the Battle at the Temple Garrodh, the clash immediately following his miraculous return.
COMPANY OF IRON
THE BIG GUNS BATTLEGROUP CONTROLLERS, LESSER WARLOCKS & WEAPON CREWS by William “Oz” Schoonover
The Iron Kingdoms are always rife with conict, and among all the soldiers ghting across Caen, relatively few are warcasters or warlocks. It is even rarer for these powerful warriors to be found in the types of skirmishes represented in Company of Iron, but on some occasions, novice warcasters or lesser warlocks might be called upon to serve in these small combat operations. And though mobility is a key strength of a small ghting force, it is also sometimes necessary to employ more cumbersome heavy weaponry. With these rules, you can include battlegroup controllers, lesser warlocks, and weapon crews in your forces.
n addition to these new ways to expand your model options when building a Company of Iron force, you’ll also nd a new scenario. The scenario takes its inspiration from the two new army-building options, tasking a novice warcaster or lesser warlock with leading a force into the teeth of a defended position. As always, you can play this scenario as written or use it as inspiration when coming up with your own scenarios.
KHADORAN WARJACKS The Khadoran High Kommand has recently modied its combat doctrine to allow some older warjack models to be elded in i n small smal l engagements. engagements . As of th is is sue, Khador Company of Iron forces can contain Berserker, Mad Dog, and Rager heavy warjacks.
BATTLEGROUP CONTROLLERS & LESSER WARLOCKS IN COMPANY COMPANY OF IRON The most important missions are only entrusted to the besttrained commanders. These individuals are uniquely capable of controlling warjacks or warbeasts and are gifted with sorcerous power that gives them an edge in any battle.
BATTLEGROUP A battlegroup consists of a ’jack marshal or beast warden and any warjacks or warbeasts they control. A model with a limited battlegroup can control only the listed models.
BOOSTER A model with the Booster rule can discard any card to boost one of its attack or damage rolls.
EMPOWERED BEAST WARDEN An empowered beast warden can control twice as many warbeasts as a standard beast warden. A warbeast in its controlling empowered beast warden’s command range can discard a card to use its animus during an activation in which it doesn’t run. This model must be controlling at least one warbeast at the start of the game.
EMPOWERED ’JACK MARSHAL An empowered ‘jack ‘jack marshal can control twice tw ice as many warjacks as a standard ‘jack marshal. This model must be controlling at least one warjack at the start of the game.
FOCUSER This model’s command range is equal to its CMD + FOCUS stats. A model with the Focuser rule has a Magic Ability score equal to its Focus stat +2. It can cast each of its spells once during an activation in which it doesn’t run by discarding one card per spell cast. Spells with “YES” in the OFF column are oensive.
HARNESSER This model’s command range is equal to its CMD + FURY stats. A model with the Harnesser rule has a Magic Ability score equal to its Fury stat +2. It can cast each of its spells once during an activation in which it doesn’t run by discarding one card per spell cast. Spells with “YES” in the OFF column are oensive.
PAIRED MODELS Some warjacks and warbeasts are associated with a particular solo. Even though the Companion rule is not used in Company of Iron, these models are still purchased as a group when building buildi ng an army. army. Since they are purchased in a group, neither model counts as costing more than 10 points when determining how many activations they can take each round.
SPELL STATISTICS STATISTICS Spells possessed by the models in this update use the same rules for stats as animi (see Company of Iron: Advanced Rules, page 7). A spell with a duration of UP lasts until the end of the spellcaster’s next activation.
“WITHOUT BEING FORCED” Rules that allow a warbeast to do something, like charge or slam, without being forced also allow the warbeast to do that action without using the Hurry! benet.
COMPANY OF IRON
ADJUSTMENT ADJUSTMENTS S TO TO MODEL-SPECIFIC RULES Battlegroup Controller Controller Use the following text for the Battlegroup Controller special rule instead of the text on the model’s card: Battlegroup Controller – This model has the following
special r ules: Empowered ’Jack ’Jack Marshal, Focuser, and Booster.
Charmer Use the following text for the Charmer special rule instead of the text on the t he model’s model’s card: Charmer – Friendly warbeasts in this model’s model’s control
range never frenzy.
Lesser Warlock Use the following text for the Lesser Warlock special rule instead of the text on the model’s card: Lesser Warlock – This model has the following special
rules: Empowered Beast Warden, Harnesser, and Booster.
Draconic Consort Use the following text for the Draconic Consort special rule instead of the text on the model’s card: Draconic Consort – This model has the following special
rules: Empowered Beast Warden, Harnesser, and Booster. This model can control only non-character Faction lesser warbeasts.
Haunting Melody Use the following text for the Haunting Melody spell instead of the text on the t he model’s model’s card: While in the spellcaster’s command range, living enemy models cannot use orders. Aected models that make a melee or ranged attack targeting this model roll an additional die and drop the h ighest. Haunting Melody lasts until the end of th is model’s model’s next activation.
WEAPON WE APON CREWS CR EWS IN COMPANY COMPANY OF IRON Some missions require more repower than a standard patrol.
ADJUSTMENTS TO TO MODELSPECIFIC RULES Catastrophic Explosion Use the following text for the Catastrophic Explosion special rule instead of the text on the model’s card: Catastrophic Explosion – When this model is destroyed,
choose a point d6 + 3 from thi s model and roll deviation from that point, with d irection 4 on t he deviation template template pointing dir ectly toward the rear edge of your deployment zone. Center a 4 AOE on the point of impact. Models in the AOE suer an unboostable POW 12 re damage roll and the Fire continuous eect . ˝
Mobile Artillery Use the following text for the Mobile Artillery special rule instead of the t he text on the model’s card: Mobile Artillery – This model can use Mobile Artillery
once per game at the beginni ng of its activation. This activation, this model gains +3 SPD and cannot perform a Combat Action.
COMPANY OF IRON
AGAINS AGAINST T THE DEVIL DE VILS S by Matt Goetz
The Ragman’s mask sucked in with each labored breath. Unlike the gun mages or their young champion, the trek had taken its toll on him. Lord Mylo di Northryne had enjoyed too many boiled pheasants and stued plums recently and too much wine to pair with it. His past few weeks as a noble in exile had provided him too many opportunities to indulge in the former and perhaps too little of the latter, but tonight he was the Ragman once more, not di Northryne. He missed the comforts of his former life, but his assumed identity gave him certain freedoms. The night would provide him with a supply of new corpses to work his craft on—if he played his cards right. The Ragman moved through the underbrush until he had a clear view of the checkpoint below. Soldiers milled about in the lantern light behind a string of cheval de frise that created obstacles in the road. It was positioned at the crest of a lower hill straddling the main road, and large boulders had been dragged into place to provide cover. The Ragman looked for warjacks that could have put them there. t here. Spotting none, he felt a moment of elation, which sour ed when he caught sight of a xed weapon team. A gunner and loader rested near their weapon, idly chatting by the look of things. “This is what I i nformed your mistress about,” about,” the Ragman said, pointing with his walking stick, “and why she agreed agreed to my terms.” “Those are Cygnarans,” young Master Crosse said, his brow furrowed. His eyes ashed for a moment as he touched the cortex of a Vanguard warjack farther back in the trees, causing it to halt. “Madame d’Elyse is aware of who is on th is road. Your Resistance plans to move a supply of alchemical weaponry, the Devil’s Gasp, to the Kh adoran stronghold at Balcourt. Cygnar ’s Lord General does not approve of such . . . strategic choices.” The young Resistance ghter’s ghter’s eyes narrowed. na rrowed. He moved one hand to the bulky, four-barreled rearm hanging at his hip. “I suppose you think I do?” The Ragman’s smirk was invisible behind his mask. “Let us say I have heard stories of you and your talents. Our methods might not be the same, but they are close neighbors.” “You’re a mad necromancer,” Crosse said. “And you are what, Master Crosse? A mi sunderstood hero with a soul-stealing gun?” Ignoring him, Crosse turned to the gun mages. “If we circle northeast and start ring, we might be able to draw enough of them o to make a blockade run feasi ble.” ble.” “Noble, “Noble, Master Crosse, but not possible,” possi ble,” the Ragman said. “The coach with the Devil’s Gasp rides against the devils itself. It must reach Balcourt before dawn. The kapitan Madame d’Elyse bribed said he would not turn a blind eye one moment moment longer.” longer.”
“Then what do you propose?” Crosse whi spered sharply sha rply.. The Ragman thrilled that the young man was so easy to goad. He led the thought away should he require it later as he tapped the blackened quad-iron with the tip of his walking stick. “Demonstrate to me how dierent our methods really are,” he said. In the distance, he could hear the whinny of horses and the crack of a coachman’s whip. whip. The Cygnarans at t he blockade stirred, some unlimbering their guns. “You take pleasure in it,” Crosse said, freeing his weapon and summoning the Vanguard. The Ragman gripped his walking stick and prepared to call down a spell. “Oh, I do. I do very much.”
COMPANY OF IRON SCENARIO
BETWEEN A CLOCK AND A FORTIFIE FOR TIFIED D POSITION
by William “Oz” Schoonover
An entrenched enemy position must be eliminated to allow for safe passage of a supply convoy. The base is situated in an area that prevents a large force from assaulting it, and time is of the essence. The supply s upply convoy convoy cannot can not slow to wait out a prolonged siege. The only alternative is for a small force to sneak close to t he enemy and destroy them. Luckily, the right warrior for the job has assembled a handpicked force, and they are already making their way toward the objective.
The attacker’s models can forfeit either their Normal Movement or their Combat Action to perform a mission action.
Setup In this scenario, each player receives 5 bonus points with which to build an army. The Attacker must spend these points on a solo from those listed on page 22. This solo must be the commander of the Attacker’s army, and the army cannot include a weapon crew unit. The Defender must spend these points on a weapon crew unit, and their army cannot include any of the solos in this article. The Attacker begins the game with priority. After terrain has been set up, the defender chooses a table edge and must place two objective markers and a ag marker on the table. Any terrain that interferes with ag and objective placement should be moved the least amount possible to allow for the markers. The objective markers are placed 8 from the defender’s table edge and 8 from each side of the table. ˝
The ag marker is placed 6 from the t he defender’s table edge and at least 4 from the objectives. ˝
Once the ag and objectives have been placed, the defender deploys completely within 6 of their table edge. After the defender deploys, the attacker deploys completely within 3 of the opposite table edge. ˝
Advance De ployment Limit
Note: A model that is placed as a result of Ambush or Burrow cannot perform a mission action during its activation the round it was placed. When one of the attacker’s models performs a mission action while in contact with an objective and there are fewer battleready defender models in contact with the objective, the marker is removed from the board. When one of the attacker’s models performs a mission action while in contact with the ag and both objectives have been removed from the table, remove the ag marker.
Victory Victor y Conditions The game ends at the end of the fth round, when both objective markers and the t he ag marker are removed from play, or when the attacker no longer has models in play. The attacker wins if all three markers are removed from play. The defender wins if they have models on the table when the game ends and the ag marker is still in play or if all of the attacker’s models have been destroyed dest royed or removed from play. The game ends in a draw at the end of the fth round if the defender has no models in play and the ag marker is still in play. play.
THE GATE GATE OF MISTS by Matt Goetz & Douglas Seacat
ising from the verdant verdant expanse of the western Mistbough Mistbough Forest, the Gate of Mists is one of the most important strongholds in Ios. The Gate of Mists is a sprawling complex of fortied structures housing tens of thousands of Iosans. It has long stood as the rst line of defense between the vulnerab vul nerable le Iosan interior and the warfare of the human Iron Kingdoms. Soldiers stationed at the complex know that without their vigilance , their nation nation could be overwhelmed overwhelmed by larger armies. Each of the major Iosan fortresses is unique, overseen by one of the ve Great Military Houses, serving as headquarters, training center, and home garrison. Yet while each is formidable, the Gate of Mists exceeds all others in terms of its size and military readiness. It is viewed as the foremost barrier against invaders to Ios, a bastion protecting its most vulnerable entrance as well as the one most directly accessible to humanity. It is the lynchpin of the web of defensive fortications surrounding Ios, built large enough to accommodate not only Great Military House Rhyslyrr, its primary steward, but thousands of soldiers from other houses as well. It has long been expected that threats to Ios would most likely strike here rst and hardest, and that all of Ios’ defenders might need to rally to its defense.
Keeping watch over the misty forest beyond its walls are skilled sibyls, elves talented in foresight, scrying, and prophecy, who can issue warnings to the military commanders weeks or months in advance of an assault. It has been challenged more than once, but it has never fallen.
HISTORY Before Ios there was t he Empire of Lyoss, a vast and advanced civilization of elves sprawling across eastern Immoren. When the Cataclysm shattered the t he continent and dest royed Lyoss, Lyoss, it displaced the survivors of the event, who were forced to ee to the west. Security was an early priority for these refugees. The rst cities of Ios had not even been completed before builders erected several great fortresses. The Gate of Mists was one of these early constructions, following Aeryth Dawnguard and the Gate of Storms. Building began shortly after the completion of the Gate of Storms to the north. When Lyoss was intact, the elves had made contact with the dwarves of Rhul, who had already established their own civilization in the northern mountains, the only other people of Immoren to have risen ris en above a tribal society. The Gate of Storms served as a defensible channel of communication and trade between Ios and Rhul R hul but could hold back the Rhulfolk if
they thought to strike against Ios while its people were weakened from the Cataclysm. So too did these early founders turn their attention to the primitive but teeming bands of humanity beyond the forest, seen by some as a more pressing and immediate threat. Rhul was formidable, but it had shown little inclination to expand beyond beyond its inhospitable inhospitable mountains. Master builders of House Aiesyn, a house legendary for the skill of its stoneworkers and architects, designed the Gate of Mists, following the traditions of Lyossan fortresses and the sage advice of the generals of the great gr eat houses of the day. day. Aiesyn’s architects oversaw the construction eort and led work crews, though much of the actual labor fell to a coalition of citizens from dozens of lesser houses. Iosans brought thousands of tons of cut stone harvested from the mountains surrounding Mount Shyleth Breen to the site, along a now-forgotten now-forgotten road known as Nyssor’s Path. Path. Whole villages vil lages sprang up along t he road to accommodate the needs of the workers who toiled day and night to deliver the supplies to the construction site. Construction took ten thousand builders just over ve years to complete. During that time, teams of workers expanded the Knot, the main road through Ios, connecting the Gate of Mists to the sites of what would be nearby Issyrah to the northeast and later to Iryss deeper in the interior. During construction, the Iosans observed the gradual spread of the numerous tribal communities in the plains to the west of the Mistbough Forest, occupying what is now eastern Llael. The humans of what would one day become Llael were st ill, by Iosan standards, a loose rabble of primitives, but they were already numerous and violent. In due time, the Gate of Mists’ defenses grew to include large counter-siege weapons, as well as cunningly disguised traps deployed throughout the forest west of the gate to deal with any expeditions from human tribes that might seek to exploit the natural resources of the Mistbough or that became curious about the lands to the east. House Rhyslyrr was given charge of these eorts, a responsibility it undertook with grave solemn ity. As human civilization became more sophisticated and its weapons of war more formidable, the Gate of Mists became increasingly critical to the nation’s defense. The complex of buildings buildi ngs and outer fortications was expanded, soon becoming the largest in Ios, outpacing even Aeryth Dawnguard. By the time rst contact between humans and Iosans was made, the elves stood ready with an impressive display of force to discourage intrusion. This eort was largely successful. Ios became known as an impenetrable nation, and few dared to cross beyond its borders. A few ambitious warlords attempted to ma ke shows of force at the Gate of Mists, but their primitive weaponry proved inadequate against the outer walls. Other than a few minor skirmishes with determined human interlopers, the Gate of Mists endured no major conicts for most of its existence. Even the Orgoth conquerors were unwilling to commit an invasion force to Ios.
When mankind’s mank ind’s technology advanced enough for its goods to be judged useful to the Iosan people, the Gate of Mists became the primary point of trade between Ios and the kingdom of Ryn and through them, Umbrey and the Khardic Empire beyond. In this period of open trade with human nations, many traders marveled at the ne craftsmanship on display and were taken aback by the impressive fortications keeping them from venturing deeper into Ios. Merchants from the trade houses of Ios had their own pavilions and chambers in the vast complex and met with their human counterparts to discuss trade, giving them a glimpse of how the elves lived. A few carefully vetted emissaries were allowed to venture deeper, always under guard, to witness the full majesty of Ios. Great care was taken that the humans never caught sight of the abandoned streets of cities like Issyrah, however. The elves kept a secret of their dwindling population. Humanity could never learn of the Malaise or of the gradual decline of the Iosan people. The great conict at Issyrah against the rampaging dragon Ethrunbal would soon have devastating consequences for the masters of the Gate of Mists. When the alarm was raised at the emergence of this dragon from below that city, House Rhyslyrr was the nearest and therefore rst Great Military House to respond in strength. While heroic, this battle served to decimate an entire generation of the house’s soldiery. After Issyrah was reduced to slag and ruin by the dragon, it essentially became a memorial for the Iosans lost there. It would be decades before House Rhyslyrr recovered its former strength, leaving it reluctant to engage in more recent conicts like the Iosan civil war called the War of the Houses, from which Rhyslyrr was notably absent. The descendants of those Iosans have proven well-suited to defend the structure due to a long history of marksmanship and skill at arms. It is claimed by the leaders of House Rhyslyrr that the Stormfall Archers learned their craft by observing the master archers of the house and that a skilled Rhyslyrr marksman can pierce an apple hanging from a tree by simply hearing the branch creak beneath its weight. Perhaps the defenders at the gate succumbed to hubris, thinking that no force in western Immoren could threaten the Gate of Mists and the skill of its protectors. In a way they were correct, for when Ios’ borders were violated by invaders from beyond, they did not manage their entry here. In 608 AR, under the guidance of ancestral spirits, Supreme Archdomina Makeda of the Skorne Empire initiated a campaign against Ios. While her trusted general Tyrant Xerxis assaulted Aeryth Dawnguard to the northeast, and her own force advanced on the Twilight Gate near Mount Shyleth Breen, she commanded a massive force led by Dominar Rasheth and Lord Arbiter Hexeris to threaten the Gate of Mists. Over a period of months, the commanders put the skill of the defenders to the test in prolonged siege warfare that relied on the immense cadre of Rasheth’s titans, siege beasts from the east, and the utter ruthlessness of the lord arbiter.
This attack was a feint but one of great importance, intended to ensure that the Iosan defenders could not muster in strength against Makeda. It proved to be incredibly eective. The skilled archers and riemen of House Rhyslyrr received reinforcement from the Homeguard Coalition, great military houses, and the Retribution of Scyrah. Rasheth and Hexeris kept this larger force occupied with frequent assaults on the Gate of Mists, even managing to cause signicant structural damage to several of the peripheral defensive towers. More important, their attack occupied enough of the Iosans’ military strength that the more remote Twilight Twilight Gate could be breached, paving the way for invasion of the Iosan interior. Through all this, the defenders of the Gate of Mists remain resolutely proud that the breach was not managed through their territory.
GEOGRAPHY The Gate of Mists is much more than a simple gate and barrier walls. It is a full-edged military city that controls access to the Knot and is populated by many thousands of Iosans ready to ght and die in its defense. Several small outposts line the road to the gate through the western Mistbough Forest. These outposts are considered part of the gate and are manned by its garrison. Homeguard soldiers stationed at the outposts act as a warning system in the event of an attack, sending out swift riders and signal beacons before evacuating back to the main compound or fading into the forest. The western approach to the Gate of Mists is the best defended. The walls bristle with massive arcanikal energy cannon batteries and have dozens dozens of high watchtowers. watchtowers. Massive eld generators located near the main walls produce defensive elds similar to those of Shyeel myrmidons, designed to rob an invader’s artillery of strength in the event of a full-scale assault. All along the gate’s walls are numerous ring positions for the expert riemen and archers of House Rhyslyrr, as well as ring ports on the wall surfaces, their openings concealed by cunning stonework. In the event of a siege, these ports allow sharpshooters to re down at the base of the wall to pick o sappers and ladder crews from safety. The most prominent and signicant feature of the location are the main gates themselves. Rising hundreds of feet from the forest oor, each is clad in metal and treated with ancient Lyossan techniques to increase its durability. Since Ios cut o communication and trade with wit h the outside world at the outset of its civil war, the main gates have remained sealed, but many smaller sally ports along the perimeter wall allow soldiers to pass through the fortress. Within the outer wall lies an expansive compound of defensive structures, garrison buildings, and arcanist workshops. The Gate of Mists is a fully functioning, self-sucient city, with its own dedicated artisans and agriculture to support the needs of its occupants. Each major house contributes a small portion of its own resources to the garrison as part of a yearly tithe. This tithe occurs after the rst sundown of the new year, out of respect for Ayisla, the Nis-Arsyr of Night and Watcher of the
vanished goddess close to their hearts, and many structures have small shr ines devoted to her memory. A matched pair of inner gates stand on the northeastern side of the Gate of Mists. A section of the Knot runs through t hrough the center of the Gate of Mists, connecting these i nner and outer gates. There There are high walls on either side of the roadway, with dozens of ring loops and shielded positions for heavy cannons. These interior positions are mostly abandoned now, with the bulk of defenses focused on the southern and western walls of the compound.
CURRENT AFFAIRS Following the Iosan victory against the skorne invaders, the Gate of Mists has once again become critical to the nation’s defense. Rather than a simple barrier to the west, it is now a staging point for much of the western Mistbough Forest. Houseguard patrols regularly set out from the compound in search of skorne reconnaissance patrols around the keeps in the southern Iosan mountains that they retained after the war. So too does the Retribution of Scyrah maintain a signicant presence here. The Gate of Mists is a valuable asset from which the Retribution can muster larger forces before operating in human lands, and many of the soldiers stationed there are ideal candidates for radicalization and indoctrination into the sect. The damage the Gate of Mists suered from the skorne attacks was swiftly repaired, at no small expense in terms of labor and resources. The soldiers who perished in this ghting were also replaced, including among them those who have sworn oaths to the Retribution of Scyrah.
HOSTILE TERRITORY SCENARIO
by Will Hungerford
Fornax drew near enough to see t he gleaming walls of the Gate of Mists. Elves atop the wall looked like white insects in their armor as he crept closer, prompting his Venators to follow suit. They were all skilled marksmen, chosen to join the war party because of the tally of foes they claimed during the war with Ios. The next patrol to leave the fortress would fall prey to his cunning ambush as they were nearly in range. As they moved, a Venator cried out. Next to her a small device erupted from the soft soft forest soil. It shot up to the height of of a Cyclops with with a burst of light, and then detonated in a ash of arcane re. mournfully as the Void Void claimed him. This is unjust , , Fornax thought mournfully
Special Rules Force Field Generator This scenario uses the Force Field Generator terrain feature. This terrain feature is a 4 -diameter circle, the entire base of which counts as an obstruction. ˝
Each Generator projects a Force Field that severely reduces the potency of all ranged and magic attacks around each Generator. When a model declares a target of a magic or ranged attack, draw an imaginary line from the center of the attacking model directly to the center of the target of the attack. If the line pass es within withi n 5 of any Generator, the attack rolls one less damage die.
Gameplay Overview Excessive Force is a team scenario pitting Iosan Defenders against Invaders seeking to breach the Gate of Mists. The Gate of Mists is well defended, thanks to a series of Force Field Generators that completely neutralize any dedicated artillery or ranged oensive, as well as pockets of deadly Force Mine Fields that will obliterate any infantry attempting to shut down the Generators. Any force attempting to invade the Gate of Mists must be prepared to suer grisly losses.
Force Mine Field This scenario also uses the Force Mine Field terrain feature. This terrain feature should be no larger than 5 × 5 and can be irregularly shaped. The entire base counts as rough terrain. ˝
When a model enters a Force Mine Field, there is a chance it will set o one of the mines. The Defender immediately rolls a d6, and on a roll of a 5 or 6, a mine is set o. The model that set o the mine suers a POW 12 magical damage roll , is pushed d6 directly away from the center of the Force Mine Field terrain feature, and ends its Normal Movement immediately. ˝
Team Composition & Army Building This scenario is played with four players, evenly separated into two teams: Defenders and Invaders. Players can either agree or randomly decide who will be Defenders and who will be Invaders. Each player creates a 50-point army. Players treat their teammate’s models as friendly models but not friendly Faction models, even if they are the same Faction. Players on the same team take their tur ns simultaneously, treating their simultaneous turn as a single game turn with respect to the duration of spells and eects. The Defenders are the rst players, deploying and taking their turn rst.
Terrain Terrain Placement & Deployment Place three Force Field Generator terrain features (see Special Rules) on the table. Place the rst Generator in the center of the t he table. Next, Next, place a Generator on each side of the rst one, centered 24 from both teams’ table edges and 12 from a side table edge, to create a straight row of Generators Generators running runn ing across the middle of the table. ˝
The Defenders then place three Force Mine Fields (see Special Rules) on the table. These must be placed in the Invaders’ half of the table and completely within 10 of any Force Field Generator. ˝
Finally, each team takes turns placing a single piece of terrain anywhere completely within their half of the table until there are six additional pieces of terrain on the table. No terrain feature can be placed within 3 of another terrain feature, with the exception of trench templates.
Destroying the Generators The Invaders’ only hope to destroy the Force Field Generators is to use the Iosans’ own technology against them. An Invader model within a Force Mine Field can forfeit its Combat Action to pull a mine out of the ground. Place a mine token next to the Invader model. If a model carrying a m ine token is destroyed or removed from play, the token is removed from the table. A model carrying carryi ng a mine token can forfeit its Combat Action while in contact with a Generator to sabotage it with the stolen mine. When it does so, place the model’s mine token on the Generator. A Generator can have any number of mine tokens placed on it. At the end of each turn, the Invader rolls a d6 for each Generator that has one or more mine tokens on it. Add 1 to the roll for each mine token on the Generator being rolled for. On a roll of a 6 or higher, the Generator is destroyed and removed from the table. If the roll is less than 6, the mines detonate harmlessly. harmlessly. After all rolls have been made for Generators with mine tokens, all mine tokens that were placed on the surviving Generators are removed from the table.
Victory Victor y Conditions The Invaders win if all three Generators are destroyed.
Both teams use standard deployment rules (7 deployment for ˝
The Defenders win if all enemy warcasters and warlocks are destroyed or removed from play.
BUILDING IOSAN DEFENSES by Danny Samuels
The Gate of Mists is as imposing as it is impenetrable. Since its construction, it has never been breached, breached, and even its outer outer defenses are formidabl formidable, e, with perilous mine elds elds thwarting enemy advances and force eld generators dulling enemy repower. Follow these steps to build your your own Iosan Iosan defenses, defenses, perfect for for the “Excessiv “Excessivee Force” Force” scenario. scenario. TOOLS & MATERIALS
Formula P3 Brown/ Aluminum Putty Formula P3 Clippers Formula P3 File Set Formula P3 Hobby Knife Formula P3 Super Glue Jeweler’s saw Ruler Sandpaper Styrene strip (.020 × .060 and .020 × .100 ) ˝
Wood or styrene base 1½ wooden sphere (from craft store) ˝
Parts from Hypnos (PIP 35045): * 0504 A Large Gauntlet × 3 * 0504 B Gun * These parts are available in the Privateer Press Online Store.
TOOLS & MATERIALS Formula P3 Clippers Formula P3 Hobby Knife Formula P3 Modeling Drill Formula P3 .50 mm Pinning Expansion Formula P3 Super Glue Jeweler’s saw Ruler
Sandpaper Wood or styrene base Parts from Fane Knight Skeryth Issyen (PIP 35026): * 0443 H Fane Knight Mounted Weapon ×6 * These parts are available in the Privateer Press Online Store.
Early prototypes of Slythnyr “Four-Fingers” Wyshnalyrr’s selfpropelled arkantrik mines were known for their temperamental trigger mechanisms.
AFTER ACTION REPORT
THE ARMORED CORPS CID by Will Pagani
Inexorable and powerful as a glacier, the Man-O-War steam into battle! The Armored Corps CID is here, bringing new versatility to the iconic Khadoran heavy infantry. Sorscha Kratiko herself steps forward to lead these Man-O-War, while new heroes bring old units more combat capability than ever before. The Siege and Assault Chariots bring surprising speed to the normally ponderous armored group, while the Tankers lay down withering repower. Here’s how these new models evolved in the CID process and where their nal versions landed.
SERGEANT DRAGO DR AGOS S DRAGADOVICH Dragos started out as a quite dierent concept from where he ended. Starting Starti ng with the t he Teamwork Teamwork once-per-game ability, Demolition Corps hit harder and more accurately than ever before. The community found this very bland, however, however, and was not excited by the option put for ward by the development team. We reimagined the model and created a new idea for him: he will do anything for the Motherland! This new direction brought about a new and unique once-per-game ability: Bond of Brotherhood. It allows models in his unit to encourage, aid, and help each other in a time of need. This is represented by the ability to spread damage out among the unit’s troopers.
Dragos was one of our more contentious models during the cycle, changing rather substantially over the two-week period. While many people had dierent ideas of what they thought the Demolition Corps should be, we ended up with a unit that was quite formidable in melee but had to receive assistance to avoid opposing ranged attacks. The addition of Shatter to their ice maul, combined with its existing Critical Freeze rule, gave it a swingy but powerful damage increase. It also made them very synergistic with certain warcasters, like the Sorschas, who have various tools to set up the Demolition Corps for a massive damage turn against your opponent’s models.
KOMMANDANT SORSCHA KRATIKOFF
KHADOR MAN-O-WAR WARCASTER
SORSCHA 3 SPD STR MAT RAT DEF ARM CMD
KOMMANDANT SORSCHA KRATIKOFF
CANNON RNG ROF AOE POW
FIELD MARSHAL [FLANK MAN-O-WAR] – Warjacks in this model’s battlegroup gain Flank [Man-O-War]. [Man-O-War]. (When a model with Flank [Man-O-War] [Man-O-War] makes a melee attack against an e nemy model in the melee range of a friendly Man-O-War model, the model with Flank gains +2 to attack rolls and gains an additional damage die.) REPAIRABLE – This model can be targeted with Repair special actions as if it were a construct model. STORM’S EMBRACE – While in this model’s command range, friendly Faction models gain concealment. CANNON
ARCING FIRE – When
attacking with this weapon, this model can ignore intervening models except those within 1 of the target. ˝
FROSTFANG CRITICAL SMITE – On
a critical hit, the model hit can be slammed d6 directly away from this model. If the model hit has a larger base than the attacking model, it is moved only half the distance rolled. The POW of collateral damage is equal to the STR of this model. FREEZE – A model hit by this weapon becomes stationary for one round unless it has has Immunity: Immunity: Cold .
KOMMANDANT SORSCHA KRATIKOFF SPELLS IRON FLESH
POW DUR –
FEAT: DEAD OF WINTER
Target friendly Faction warjack gains +2 SPD and Countercharge. Stoke the Fires lasts for one round. (When an enemy model advances and ends its movement within 6 of a model with Countercharge and in its LOS, the model with Countercharge can immediately charge it. A model can use Countercharge only once per round and not while engaged.) WIND RUSH
KOMMANDANT SORSCHA KRATIKOFF
Target friendly Faction warrior model/unit gains +2 ARM and does not suffer blast damage. Models are not affected while out of formation. STOKE THE FIRES
With the power of winter’s fury, Kommandant Sorscha Kratikoff calls down vortices of snow and ice to blanket the battleeld, turning esh black with frostbite and binding the joints of enemy warjacks.
Place d3 + 3 3 AOE cloud effects anywhere completely in Sorscha’s control range. These AOEs remain in play for one round. A model without Immunity: Cold suffers 1 point of of cold damage for each Dead of Winter AOE it enters or ends its activation within. ˝
The spellcaster can immediately make a full advance and gains +2 DEF for one round. Wind Rush can be cast only once per activation. WINTER’S WRATH
Winter’s Wrath causes cold damage . Models hit becomes stationary for one round unless they have Immunity: Cold .
added to a Man-O-War Bombardier unit. OFFICER GRANTED: CLEAR CUT – While this model is in for mation, models in its unit that are in formation gain Pathfinder when making a full advance. REPAIRABLE – This model can be targeted with Repair special actions as if it were a construct model. SUPPORT FIRE – This model can use Support Fire once per game at any time during its unit’s activation. This activation, models in its unit gain Dual Shot. (If a model with Dual Shot uses its Normal Movement to aim, it can make one additional ranged attack this activation.) TACTICS: QUICK WORK – Models in this unit gain Quick Work. (When a model with Quick Work destroys one or more enemy models with a melee attack during its Combat Action, immediately after the attack is resolved the model with Quick Work can make one basic ranged attack.) GRENADE CANNON ARCING FIRE – When
attacking with this weapon, this model can ignore intervening models except those within 1 of the target. ˝
CHAIN BLADE CRITICAL SHRED – On
a critical hit with this weapon during this model’s Combat Action, after the attack is resolved this model can make one additional attack with this weapon against the model hit.
MAN-O-WAR BOMBARDIER OFFICER Man-O-War Bombardiers are one of my personal favorite units. Their theme is so appealing to me; people in giant suits of armor wielding grenade launchers with underslung chainsaws is everything I want in a unit. This ocer was basically unchanged since the cycle began. Players seemed to really enjoy the options it brought to the unit, giving it a nice suite of abilities to deal with opposing counterplay. play. Quick Work Work makes the unit dicult to jam in melee, while Clear Cut lets it move through rough terrain and gives it a unique space in a Man-OWar army. army. Its once-per-game ability, Support Fire, allows Bombardiers to rain down a truly frightening amount of repower on the opposing army if left unmolested. In the end, the main changes to the t he unit (and ocer) were an increase to RNG 12 on their cannons and a slight RAT bump up to 6 (7 (7 for the ocer), ocer), giving a solid consistency and accuracy bump to the unit. These changes really let the Bombardiers shine.
AFTER ACTION REPORT
SERGEANT DRAGOS DRAGADOVICH
KHADOR MAN-O-WAR COMMAND ATTACHMENT DRAGADOVICH 1 SPD STR MAT RAT DEF ARM CMD
SERGEANT DRAGOS DRAGADOVICH ATTACHMENT [MAN-O-WAR DEMOLITION CORPS] – This attachment can be added to a Man-O-War Man-O-War Demolition Corps unit. DRAGADOVICH 1
BOND OF BROTHERHOOD – This
ICE MAUL RNG
model can use Bond of Brotherhood once per game at any time during its unit’s activation. For one round, when a model in this unit is damaged by an enemy attack while in formation, you can choose one or more models in this unit to suffer any amount of that damage instead, divided as you choose. A model cannot suffer more damage as a result of Bond of Brotherhood than it has unmarked damage boxes. GRANTED: VENGEANCE – While this model is in formation, models in its unit gain Vengeance. (During your Maintenance Phase, if one or more models in a unit with Vengeance were damaged by enemy attacks during the last round, each model in the unit can advance 3 and make one basic melee attack.) REPAIRABLE – This model can be targeted with Repair special actions as if it were a construct model. TACTICS: DEFENSIVE LINE – Models in this unit gain Defensive Line. (While B2B with one or more models in its unit, a model with Defensive Line gains +2 DEF against melee attacks and cannot become knocked down.) ˝
CRITICAL FREEZE – On a critical hit, the model hit becomes stationary for one one round unless it has Immunity: Immunity: Cold Cold . SHATTER – This weapon gains an additional damage die against stationary models.
KOMMANDANT ATANAS ARCONOVICH & STANDARD
KHADOR MAN-O-WAR UNIT
SPD STR MAT RAT DEF ARM CMD
HAND CANNON RNG ROF AOE POW
MAN-O-WAR SUPPRESSION TANKER The Suppression Tanker started the cycle as a very powerful antiinfantry piece that threatened light warjacks, warbeasts, and ’casters alike. After many iterations of tuning and trying dierent rules, including range changes, RAT and POW changes, and even modifying its special attack, we ended up almost back where we started. We tried dierent variations of the model with and without its dening rule, Volley Fire, which gives boosted attack rolls against warrior models, but we ended up leaving the rule on the Tanker and reducing the POW of its ranged attacks to 10 for normal shots and 14 for its special attack. The result was a much more consistent anti-infantry model.
STANDARD STANDARD BEARER SPD STR MAT RAT DEF ARM CMD
KOMMANDANT ATANAS ARCONOVICH & STANDARD ARCONOVICH 1
model can use one of the following plans at any time during its activation. A friendly Faction model/unit can be affected by only one plan each turn. Man-O-War model/unit. • Heroic call – RNG 5. Target friendly Man-O-War If the model/unit is in range, range, it gains gains Tough Tough . Models are not affected while out of formation. Heroic Call lasts for one round. Man-O-War model/ • relentless tide – RNG 5. Target friendly Man-O-War unit. If the model/unit is in range, it gains Relentless Charge for one turn. (While advancing as part of a charge, a model with Relentless Charge gains Pathfinder .) • Unstoppable FUry – RNG 5. Target friendly Man-O-War model/unit. If the model/unit is in range, it gains Retaliatory Strike. Unstoppable Fury lasts for one round. (If a model with Retaliatory Strike is hit by a melee melee attack attack made made by an enemy model model during during your your opponent’ opponent’ss turn, after that attack is resolved the model with Retaliatory Strike can immediately make one basic melee attack against that model. A model can make one Retaliatory Strike per turn.) repairable – This model can be targeted with Repair s pecial actions as if it were a construct model. tactician [Man-o-War] – While in this model’s command range, friendly Man-O-War models can ignore other friendly Man-O-War models when determining LOS. Friendly Man-O-War Man-O-War models can advance through other friendly Man-O-War models in this model’s command range if they have enough movement to move move completely past them. STANDARD BEARER repairable – See above.
standard bearer – While
this model is within 5 of its unit commander, the unit commander gains +2 CMD.
with an enemy model during its Normal Movement, it can push that model up to 2 directly away from it. A model can be pushed by Bulldoze only once per activation. Bulldoze has no effect when this model makes a trample power attack. REPAIRABLE – This model can be targeted with Repair s pecial actions as if it were a construct model. ˝
Place a wall template anywhere completely within this weapon’s RNG and this model’s LOS, ignoring intervening models. A model entering or ending its activation in the template suffers a damage roll with POW equal to the POW of this weapon. The template remains in play for one round. If this model is destroyed or removed from play, play, immediately remove the template from play. FULL BLAST (★ ATTACK) – This weapon becomes RNG SP 8 and POW 14 for this attack. VOLLEY FIRE – This weapon’s attack rolls against warrior models are boosted. COVERING FIRE (★ ACTION) –
MAN-O-WAR STRIKE TANKER
TANKER SPD STR MAT RAT DEF ARM CMD
MAN-O-WAR STRIKE TANKER
SLUG CANNON RNG ROF AOE POW
BULLDOZE – When this model is B2B
with an enemy model during its Normal Movement, it can push that model up to 2 directly away from it. A model can be pushed by Bulldoze only once per activation. Bulldoze has no effect when this model makes a trample power attack. DUAL ATTACK – This model can make melee and ranged attacks in the same activation. When this model makes its initial melee attacks or a power attack, it can also make its initial ranged attacks. This model can make ranged attacks even while in melee. REPAIRABLE – This model can be targeted with Repair special actions as if it were a construct model. ˝
When calculating damage from this weapon, halve the base ARM stats of models hit. weapon loses Tough and GRIEVOUS WOUNDS – A model hit by this weapon cannot have damage removed from it for one round. SIEGE WEAPON – This weapon gains an additional die to its damage rolls against huge-based models. ARMOR-PIERCING –
model can make melee and ranged attacks in the same activation. When this model makes its initial melee attacks or a power attack, it can also make its initial ranged attacks. This model can make ranged attacks even while in melee. LINE BREAKER – This model gains an additional die on impact attack rolls. REPAIRABLE – This model can be targeted with Repair special actions as if it were a construct model. activation in which it did not run or REPOSITION [3 ] – At the end of an activation fail a charge, this model can advance up to 3 , then its activation activation ends. SMOKE LAUNCHERS – This model can use Smoke Launchers once per activation at any time. Place one 3 AOE cloud effect completely within each of this model’s fields of fire and completely within 5 of this model. The AOEs remain in play for one round. ˝
A model directly hit by this attack can be slammed d6 directly away from this model. The POW of collateral damage is equal to the POW of this weapon.
MOUNT KNOCKDOWN – When
a model is hit by an attack with this weapon, it becomes knocked down. TRAMPLING HOOVES – This model can make charge attacks with this weapon in addition to making impact attacks.
ASSAULT ASSAULT CHARIOT SPD STR MAT RAT DEF ARM CMD
BARRAGE GUN RNG ROF AOE POW
10 d3+1 4
DUAL ATTACK – This
model can make melee and ranged attacks in the same activation. When this model makes its initial melee attacks or a power attack, it can also make its initial ranged attacks. This model can make ranged attacks even while in melee. LINE BREAKER – This model gains an additional die on impact attack rolls. REPAIRABLE – This model can be targeted with Repair special actions as if it were a construct model. REPOSITION [3 ] – At the end of an activation in which it did not run or fail a charge, this model can advance up to 3 , then its activation ends. ˝
BARRAGE GUN HIGH-EXPLOSIVE – Blast
damage caused by this weapon is POW 10.
MOUNT KNOCKDOWN – When a model is hit by an attack with this weapon, it becomes knocked down. TRAMPLING HOOVES – This model can make charge attacks with this weapon in addition to making impact attacks.
MAN-O-WAR STRIKE TANKER The Strike Tanker found a home pretty quickly for most players. While it was not nearly as ubiquitous as the Suppression Tanker, some players found certain warcasters ran the Strike Tanker very well—specically, warcasters that could increase the Strike Tanker’s damage output (Butcher 1 and Sorscha 2 come to mind). With the Strike Tanker being caught up in some of the changes to the Suppression Tanker, it also went through a few iterations and ended up almost identical to how it started, just a point lower in cost.
AFTER ACTION REPORT
KOMMANDANT SORSCHA KRATIKOFF Sorscha in Man-O-War armor. This model presented interesting development challenges: how do you meld the classic tra its of this venerable character with the new twist of putting her in heavy, heavy, ponderous armor? Sorscha has always been associated with her speed and her mastery of winter magic, and of course her iconic weapon, Frostfang. Over the course of her career, Sorscha evolved from a deadly melee assassin to a formidable infantry leader who was capable of getting wherever she needed to be in a hurry. The newest version of Sorscha represents her continued evolution as a battleeld leader, now excelling at leading a combined-arms force of Man-O-War and heavy warjacks. This iteration of Sorscha has elements of her previous versions but also new elements that synergize very well with the Armored Corps theme force. Sorscha 3 maintains her signature spell, Wind Rush, and she still wields Frostfang. Rules like Storm’s Embrace reect Sorscha’s roots, while rules such as Field Marshal [Flank Man-O-War] reinforce her new role in the Khadoran Army. Sorscha 3 brings a unique and interesting take on the Armored Corps theme force. Whereas most warcasters will want to cram as much Man-O-War goodness into their army as possible, Sorscha prefers a mixed list combining both Man-O-War and warjacks to great eect. At the beginning of the cycle, Sorscha’s spells Stoke the Fires and Winter’s Wrath cost 2 and 4 focus, respectively. Because of this, the testing feedback revealed that Sorscha 3 was starved for focus and could not properly function as a we wanted her to. Thanks Thank s to that feedback, we r educed the cost of these two spells by 1 each to allow her a little more exibility on the table. By the s econd week of testing, players found this to be a much more exciting and dynamic warcaster, and we ended up where we wanted.
KOMM KOMMANDANT ANDANT ATANAS ATANAS ARCONOVICH & STANDARD STANDARD Similar to the Skorne Tyrant Commander & Standard, this two-model unit provides great utility for any Armored Corps force—and backs it up with a serious punch. Each of the three battle plans available provide excellent excellent exibility to the Man- OWar. War. Arconovich is a shining shin ing example to other Man-O-War and should be a leader of the army he is included in. Arconovich is another model that did not see a signicant number of changes during the cycle, but what did change had a rather large impact on the theme force as a whole. He started the cycle with the Veteran Leader rule, increasing the attack stats of all Man-O-War in his considerable command range. Players showed that this attack-stat increase was excessive and created an army that hit too consistently for what we were looking for out of Man-O-War. It ended up being t raded out for Tactician [Man-O-War], increasing the mobility of the army and making it a little easier on players to execute their strategies.
M AN-O-W AN-O -WAR AR ASSAUL ASS AULT T CHARIOT CHA RIOT The Assault Chariot, much like the Suppression Tanker, is meant to clear out opposing infantry. Having the choice of the fast and mobile Chariot or the slow and lumbering Suppression Tanker was something players seemed to enjoy. Also, like the Suppression Tanker, the Assault Chariot saw several rules changes during CID and was tested with some very powerful anti-infantry abilities, including the Volley Fire rule from the Suppression Tanker. In the end, the Assault Chariot d idn’t change signicantly; it picked up a little size on its AOE attacks and a small RAT bump to 6. These changes let it fulll its role while not being overly consistent or too threatening to enemy warcasters or warlocks.
MAN-O-WAR SIEGE CHARIOT The. Biggest. Gun. Ever. Ever. The Siege Chariot i s a dicult dicu lt model to balance because of how powerful its single ranged attack is. It started as a less-taken option during the cycle, but upon increasing its RNG and RAT slightly and giving the model a little more exibility in how it can place its smoke templates, the model found its niche. The Siege Chariot found a home with warcasters that can really protect it or project its threat deep into the opposing army; for example, Strakhov 1 and Kozlov 1 both utilize it quite well.
LEGACY MODELS KOMMANDER ANDREI ANDRE I MAL MA L AKOV AKOV
Lost Inaccurate and Minimum Range
Decreased Point Cost
Kommander Andrei Malakov was a warcaster we wanted to see shine with Man-O-War, Man-O-War, and changing just a few things really opened him up to this theme force. Removing the battlegroup restriction on his feat allows Malakov to lead a very “tricky” style of Man-O-War list. Adding the spell Open Fire gave him an incentive to run warjacks like the Victor, which is another model that received signicant upgrades upgrades during this cycle.
VICTOR The Victor received some rather impactful changes during this cycle. Dropping a whopping 4 points, losing the Inaccurate and Minimum Range rules, and getting an increase to the range of its secondary weapons should make it a much more attractive and compelling choice.
BERSERKER, RAGER, MAD DOG These three warjacks were all modied in the same way. After some changes to this chassis a year ago, they all fell out of favor. We hope this update will once again give them a spot in Khador armies. These are the cheapest warjacks in the Faction, and balancing them has bee n quite a dicult task. When you have have a model that is in the 8-10 point range that is also as durable as these heavy warjacks can be, it’s very important to keep an eye on that. This is where the Mad Dog got into trouble at the start of the new edition. Lowering the three warjacks’ points again, slightly enhancing their combat abilities with an increase in their MAT, and slightly lowering the number of damage boxes left us in a place where we feel condent they will not only see the table again but can ourish with the right warcasters and army builds.
PAINTING FU FUR R FEA FE ATURING LOKI by Lauren Fahey
Techniques & Textures Textures is a series on painting miniatures m iniatures that t hat focuses on dierent painting techniques and how to apply them for specic texture applications. In this edition, we’ll be exploring exploring drybrushing, side-lining, side-lining, and freehand painting painting with a focus on dramatic dramatic fur applications. The model we’ll be showcasing this technique on is Loki.
FORMULA P3 PAINTS USED ARMOR WASH
GUN CORPS BROWN
MENOTH WHITE HIGHLIGHT
YELLOW I NK
CRYX BANE BASE
CRYX BANE HIGHLIGHT
ur appears everywhere in the Iron Kingdoms, from the lining of warm clothing to the protective fur of great shaggy beasts. So, it is essential to have several techniques in your toolbox for painting it, and to that end, we’re going to take a look at three dierent methods you can use to achieve a dramatic fur eect on a heavy warbeast, the warpwolf Loki. Drybrushing and side-lining are best used on the sculpted fur, and you can use a simple freehand technique to give smooth surfaces the illusion of short fur.
Give Loki a quick seal with a matte spray, reclaim the shiny highlights on the metals, and then give him a nice forest setting base. With such a great sculpt to work with, it’s worth it to spend a little extra time to make Loki an army centerpiece. You can take these techniques and apply them across so many of the Factions, not just the ubiquitously furr y Circle Orboros. Khador, Trollbloods, Trollbloods, Legion of Everblight, and
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ARCANISTS ARC ANISTS by Will Hungerford
DOWNLOAD PRINTER-FRIENDLY PRINTER-FRIENDLY CASTING CAS TING POOLS POOL S AT PRIVATEERPRESS.COM/NQP5
Arcanists is a game in which players assume the roles of mighty wizards engaged in deadly spell duels with their arcane nemeses! Using just a few models from your WARMACHINE or HORDES collection, you will need to predict your opponent’s every move as you attempt to overwhelm them with the might of your sorcery. (Note that Arcanists does not use any of the normal rules for WARMACHINE and HORDES.) rcanists is played with two to four players, each using a single smal l-based model from t he WARMACHINE WARMACHINE and HORDES HORDES lines as their arcanist. arcani st. Games of Arcanists are played on 30 × 30 tables with a small amount of terrain.
FORESIGHT TRAC TR ACK K& CASTING POOLS
The game is played over several game rou nds. Players alternate activating their models to cast spells each round until all players have run out of dice to cast with.
The game uses six-sided dice to resolve the action and tape measures to determine model movement and ranges. When moving a model or determining if a model is in range of an eect or in range to make an attack, measure from the model’s base. A model cannot be placed with its base overlapping another model’s base. Players use the Foresight system to determine which model goes rst each round and to determine how many extra dice a player receives to cast spells. The only way to secure victory is to fry the enemy wizard with enough arcane might that they disintegrate into a pile of glittery ash.
STARTING STARTING THE GAME GA ME Each player begins the game by choosing a single small-based model from their WARMACHINE or HORDES miniatures collection to represent their arcanist and then choosing an archetype. The archetype determines their arcanist’s stats as well as any unique spells they have access to during the game. Next, players set up the battleeld using exactly ve pieces of terrain. All terrain in the game follows the same rules, as described in the Casting Spells section. We recommend each piece of terrain be no larger than 4 × 4 and represent a solid object that would block line of sight between models. ˝
Place a piece of terrain in the center of the table. Next, divide the table into four equal-sized quadrants and place a piece of terrain in the center of each quadrant. After all terrain is placed, the players roll a d6 to determine deployment. The player who rolled highest chooses a table edge and places their arcanist in contact with that table edge. The second player then places their arcanist in contact with the opposite table edge. If there is a third player, they choose either side table edge to place their arcanist on, and if there is a fourth player, they place their model on the last unclaimed table edge. After all models are placed, the players determine their initial Foresight Track (described in the next section), and the game begins.
The Foresight Track acts as both initiative score and a boost to each player’s casting capabilities each round. Before the game begins, players take six dice to set up their initial Foresight Track. Each player adjusts their dice so that the following values are displayed: 1,2,3,4,5,6. Then, each player secretly arranges ar ranges their six si x dice in any order, left to right (use your hand to cover your dice as you do so). Players should not change the value of any dice as they arrange them. All players reveal their arranged Foresight Tracks simultaneously. The order of the dice in the Foresight Track cannot change unles s a Spell changes that order. At the start of each round, after players have refreshed their casting pools, each player takes the leftmost die in their Foresight Track and removes it. The player player with the lowest value on this th is die takes the t he rst activation that game round, r ound, followed by the player with the next lowest value, and so on. In the case of any ties, the tied players roll o to determine who goes rst. After players have determined the order in which they will take activations, they receive a number of dice to distribute among their three casting pools (see below) equal to the value of the Foresight Track die they removed this turn. Players distribute these dice among their casting pools in the same order that they will activate during this round. Once all additional dice are distributed, the rst player takes their activation. At the end of a round, if all players’ Foresight Tracks are empty, they repeat the process of arranging six new dice into a new Foresight Track as they did at the beginning of the game.
CASTING POOLS Each arcanist archetype has four stats: Destruction, Warding, Ritual, and Stamina. The rst three stats indicate how many dice a player adds adds to each of the thr ee casting casti ng pools at the start of each round, which is t hen followed by adding additional dice from the result of their Foresight Track die. An arcanist’s power lies in their ability to cast potent spells, which are represented by thre e casting pools: Destruction, Warding, and Ritual. Each spell a player can cast belongs to one of these three spell categories. Each casting pool is a collection of dice that should
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TURNER'S FORESIGHT TRACK
ROUND OVERVIEW Each round of the game proceeds as follows: 1. If this is the rst round of the game, players arrange their
Foresight Track. 2. Each player refreshes their casting pools based on their
archetype stats. 3. Each player takes the leftmost die from their Foresight
Track and compares values to determine player order for the round. HOOCH'S FORESIGHT TRACK
4. In order, each player distributes dice to their casting pools
equal to the value of their Foresight die for the round. 5. Starting with the rst player, players take turns activating
their arcanist and casting a single spell or passing. 6. Repeat step 5 until all players have passed. 7. All unspent casting pool dice are removed. 8. If all players’ Foresight Tracks are empty, players arrange
their Foresight Tracks again. Example: At the beginning of the game, Turner and Hooch arrange their Foresight Tracks. Turner arranges his Foresight dice so that the order is 5,4,6,1,3,2, and Hooch arranges his so that the order is 1,6,5,2,4,3. During the first round of the game, since the value of Hooch’s Foresight die this round is lowest, Hooch goes first and receives only one additional die to add to his casting pools, which he puts into his Warding pool. Turner goes second but receives five additional dice to add to his casting pools, which he splits up as two additional dice in his Destruction pool, one in his Warding pool, and two in his Ritual pool.
be organized in front of each player player and kept separate from one another (and from the Foresight Track). The template provided on page 46 is useful for players to keep their dice pools separated. When a player casts a spell, they remove dice from the casting pool that matches the type of spell being cast and then roll those dice to determine success. When dice are removed to cast a spell, they are spent and are not returned to the pool unless a spell indicates to do so or at the beginning of each game round when the pools refresh. Example: Exa mple: Turner is playing the Stormlord arcanist archetype. It has a Destruction stat of 4, a Warding stat of 4, and a Ritual stat of 3. This means that at the start of each game round, Turner adds four dice to his Destruction casting pool, four dice to his Warding casting pool, and three dice to his Ritual casting pool. Then Turner distributes additional dice among these pools based on the value of his Foresight die for the round. Each time Turner casts a spell this round, he removes dice from the appropriate pool and rolls them to determine the result.
At the end of each round, all unspent dice in casting pools are removed.
9. The next game round begins.
The core action of arcanists occurs during steps 5 and 6, in which players alternate activating their arcanist and casting a spell. If a player cannot or does not want to cast a spell, they can choose to pass instead. Once a player passes, they cannot activate their arcanist again that round but can still cast reaction spells in response to their opponent. Example: Exa mple: Because his Foresight die for the round had the lowest value, Hooch takes the first activation this round. He begins by casting Teleport with his arcanist. Turner activates next and casts Telekinesis on Hooch’s arcanist but fails to successfully land the spell, thanks to Hooch’s Shielding reaction spell. Hooch activates after Turner’s spell is resolved, and he chooses to pass. Now Hooch can no longer activate his arcanist this round and can only cast reaction spells, such as his Shielding spell. Turner fini shes the r ound by acti a ctivatin vatin g two t wo more mo re times t imes,, cas ting a Teleport and an Arcane Bolt, before the round ends.
WINNING THE GAME GA ME A player wins when they control the only remaining arcanist on the table.
CASTING SPELLS ANATOMY ANATOMY OF A SPELL Each round, players must carefully utilize their casting pools in order to sling powerful spells with their arcanists. Spells are broken down into two major categories and three casting categories. The major categories are Unlimited and Unique. All arcanists, regardless of archetype, know all Unlimited spells. Unique spells are available only to specic archetypes.
TERRAIN TERR AIN & LINE OF SIGHT SIGHT Unlike WARMACHINE & HORDES, Arcanists does not use a model’s front or back arc to determine line of sight (LOS). If a player can draw an uninterrupted straight line from their model’s base to another model’s base, the rst model has LOS to the second model. Models do not block LOS; only terrain blocks LOS, and a model must have LOS to its target, in addition to the spel l being in i n range, in order to cast a spell at that target.
A caster can cast any number of Unlimited spells during a round as long as that caster has enough casting pool dice to do so. Each Unique spell can be cast only once per round.
Additionally, terrain can provide Cover. If a model is within 2 of a piece of terrain and at least one uninterrupted straight line can be drawn between it and an enemy model targeting it with a Destruction spell that intersects the terrain, the model has Cover.
The three casting categories are Destruction, Warding, and Ritual. Each spell is described by its Type, its Range (RNG), whether or not it is a chain-casting spell, and a description of what the spell does.
When a model has Cover, enemy models targeting it with a Destruction spell do not count dice results of 4 as successes during their spell-casting test—only 5s and 6s count. (See Casting Tests below.)
Type: A player can only use dice from the casting pool that
Models cannot be placed on or in terrain.
matches the type of spell they are casting. RNG: This indicates the maximum range in inches that the spell
can target a model. If the target is outside of this range, the spell cannot be cast. Spells with a RNG of “Self” are cast on the arcani st using the spell and are always in range. Note that some spells, especially Ritual spells, have a RNG of Self but aect enemy models or your opponent. This makes those spell s very potent, as your arcanist does not requi re range or line of sight for the spell’s eect to take place. CHAIN: If a spell has CHAIN in its description, it is a chain-casti ng
spell. Normally, an arcanist casts only one spell during any given activation, but when using a CHAIN spell, after the spell is cast—whether it is successful or not—the player can choose to immediately cast another spell during the same activation. This CHAIN eect can be used only once per activation, so if a c hained spell cast is itself another CHAIN spell, it does not continue to generate more spell-casting opportunities that activation. Exam ple: Hooch casts Teleport, which is a CHAIN spell. After resolving the Teleport spell, Hooch chain-casts Arcantrik Bolt. Turner then takes his activation and casts a spell. Afterward, Hooch takes his next activation that round and casts another Teleport, which he also chains into a Telekinesis. Even though Telekinesis is also a CHAIN spell, Hooch cannot chain-cast more than once per activation, and therefore that activation is over once Telekinesis is resolved.
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Death & Damage
Spells are resolved by a casting test. When a player casts a spell with their arcanist, that player takes any number of dice (at least one) from the appropriate casting pool and rolls them. Each die result of 4, 5, or 6 is counted as a success. Additionally, Additionally, a die result of 6 is considered a Surge. When a die Surges, it counts as a success, and that player can roll it again to generate more successes. A die can Surge multiple times.
Most Destruction spells will deal damage per net success. An arcanist has a number of damage points equal to their archetype’s Stamina stat. For each point of damage suered, the arcanist loses a damage point. If a spell heals an arcanist, that arcanist gains a damage point but cannot exceed their base Stamina stat.
Warding spells allow a player to attempt to counter their opponent’s casting. Warding spells allow for a casting roll as a reaction to an opponent’s spell, with each success of the Warding spell negating one of the opponent’s successes. Each Warding spell species what type of spell it can attempt to negate. A player attempting to counter with a Warding spell must declare how many dice they are using from their Warding pool. This must be done after their opponent declares how many dice they are using to cast their spell but before any dice are rolled.
When a model has lost all of its damage points, it is destroyed and removed from the ttable. able.
ARCHET ARCHE T YPES UNLIMITED SPELLS Below is the list of Unlimited spells that all arcanists know.
After all dice are rolled, each success rolled that was not negated is counted as a net hit. Often, the total of net hits will determine the eect of a spell. If a spell has any net hits, it is successful; if a spell has no net hits, it is unsuccessful. In a multiplayer game, if more than one player wishes to use a Warding spell to counter, all of those players add their total successes together to negate successes of their opponent’s rolls. Reaction spells do not count as a player’s cast spell during that player’s player’s next activation, and a player can c ast any number of reaction spells during their opponent’s activation.
TURNER'S DESTRUCTION ROLL ROLL ONE
HOOCH'S WARDING ROLL ROLL ONE
Example: Turner casts an Arcantrik Bolt spell with his arcanist targeting Hooch’s arcanist. Turner’s model is 8 away and has LOS ˝
to Hooch’s model, so this is a legal action. Turner has six dice in his Destruction casting pool and decides to use four of them to cast the spell. Before Turner rolls any dice, Hooch decides he wants to attempt a Shielding reaction spell. Hooch has five dice in his Warding casting pool, and he decides to roll three of them. Turner rolls the dice and has a result of 1, 3, 4, 4, giving him two successes. Hooch rolls 1, 1, 6, giving him one success and a Surge. Hooch rolls the Surged die again and gets a 6 for another Surge on that die! Hooch rolls the die again and gets a 4, for a total of three successes. This means that Hooch completely negates Turner’s spell, as Turner has no net successes.
Remember, Remember, you can cast Unlimited spells sp ells multiple times per p er round.
ARCHETYPE ARCHET YPE LIST AND UNIQUE SPELLS Below are the available archetypes and their signature Unique spells. Remember, Unique spells can be cast only once per round.
FORCES OF THE LEGION:
BLIGHTED BLIGH TED OGRUN by Matt Goetz & Douglas Seacat
merging from the snow-shrouded north to bring brutal death to the enemies of the Legion of Everblight, tribes of blighted ogrun ght as a horde of blood-crazed murderers spurred on by their desire for pure carnage. With heavy blades and spears , they mow through th rough the soldiers of the dragon’s dragon’s enemies in an eort to appease their disembodied god and his chosen champion, Thagrosh, the Messiah of Everblight. Though once a proud and noble people, the ogrun of the Legion have become utterly corrupted by the touch of Everblight, every quality of strength and honor they possessed now twisted into a dark reection. There are few foes as horrifying as a tribe
of towering, muscle-bound ogrun warmongers. Spurred on by their war chiefs and howling besti al war cries, they charge forward, heedless of their own safety. Blighted ogrun fear no foes, for they no longer possess the ability to be afraid. Since their blighting, these ogrun ceased to exist as a people with a culture. Fully devoted to Everblight and committed to slaughter, they no longer live in independent villages, and the remnants of their old traditions have been drowned in blood. Instead, Everblight’s army has become their entire purpose, their religion, their identity.
The blighted ogrun stand apart f rom the blighted Nyss whom they ght alongside, a segregation of form and function t hat each race sees as natu ral and right. Members of each race see themselves as the tr ue chosen warriors of the dragon, the most dedicated and uninching enforcers of his will. Everblight’s Everblight’s ogrun have set aside al l of what they once were to embrace with fervid enthusiasm their existence as living weapons of the dragon. Simple of purpose and deranged though t hey may be, blighted ogrun are not mi ndless. While madness has touched all of them, many still possess cunning minds. This cunning is
directed at defeating t heir opponents, focused on exploiting weakness and consumi ng the esh of t he unworthy. unworthy. One who underestimates a blighted ogrun is h ighly likely to become that warrior’s next trophy. Few martial forces revel in warfare and bloodshed more than blighted ogrun warbands. Male and female, young and old, old, all train for battle and test their impressive strength in an endless cycle of preparation for war. The greatest fate a blighted ogrun can aspire to is a glorious death in battle, drenched in the blood of Everblight’s enemies while praising the Messiah.
ORIGINS OF THE BLIGHTED OGRUN Traditionally a proud people who revered the mother goddess Dhunia, the northern wild tribes of ogrun were seldom warlike but would adamantly adamantly defend their territories agai nst invasion by any outsiders. The The largest and most established group of northern ogrun settled in Rhul and became integrated into that nation’s nation’s cultu re and societ y. Over the centuries, cent uries, however, a number of scattered wild ogrun tribes made homes for themselves in northern Khador, where they were beholden to no higher authority. This also meant that, unlike their cousins in Rhul, they had very little protection from more powerful groups, leaving them vulnerable to enslavement by Khadorans
who sought to plunge deeper into the forests and mountains the ogrun called home. Many ogrun tribes withdrew deeper into the wilds and remained steadfast in their seclusion, standing apart from other cultures. They respected personal strength and fealty to one’s family and sworn leaders, as well as wisdom and strong character. That all changed with the coming of Everblight. After claiming his living host, an ogrun named Thagrosh, Everblight set out to build an army. The dragon began with the Nyss of the Shard Spires, but in time he coveted other warriors, warriors with qualities the Nyss did not possess: brute strength, incredible endurance, and the ability to contend with larger opponents. Everblight already knew, thanks to Thagrosh, that the ogrun possessed such merits.
Blighted growths extend from the bones.
Everblight wasted no time in encouraging Thagrosh to bring the wild ogrun tribes of the north under his sway. Thagrosh betrayed his former people by revealing to the dragon how best to introduce his blight to them. They began by targeting the most isolated and vulnerable tribes rst, introducing blight into water sources and food stores under cover of night. Once the rst ogru n fell u nder Everblight’s Everblight’s sway, sway, the conversion of the rest gained increasing momentum.
pronounced, and they were transformed into insane, bloodaddled killers. Their noblest qualities were stripped away and replaced with something far more bloodthirsty and cruel.
Despite this madness, the blighted ogrun retained some faint echoes of their former culture. Most important, the idea of the korune remained. To the ogrun, a korune is a worthy leader to whom an individual swears enduring loyalty, even beyond death. The blighted ogrun saw in Thagrosh their new korune Many of the greatest heroes and champions from various clans and through him their new god, Everblight. As god and master entwined as one in a single body, Thagrosh gave the blighted rallied together to oppose this twisted gure poisoning their people. These brave warriors fought ercely against Thagrosh and ogrun purpose and birthed among them a new faith. As part of this spiritual upheaval, the blighted ogrun desecrated their his dragonspawn, and for a brief moment it seemed they might shrines to Dhunia before abandoning their ancestral homes to drive back the abomination. But in the end, the eort failed, and the last great chieftain chieftai n fell, her body ung into a waiting join the Legion of Everblight as its unshakable shock troops. spawning vessel to feed the growing ar mies of the Legion. The culture of the blighted ogrun underwent an equally rapid transformation and simplication. While they continued to One by one, tribes fell to the blight. In time, word reached other clans, who had already begun to learn of the corruption of the respect physical strength and prowess, gone was any regard for restraint or wisdom. Instead, one’s ability to kill took Nyss. Fearing the same fate, dozens dozens of northern ogrun tribes abandoned their ancestral lands in a mass exodus, moving farther precedence over all other qualities. Brutish warmongers displaced their once-respected korunes, often through bloody south and east into the forests near Skirov and the Thundercli and treacherous execution. Peaks. These tribes brought with them word of the fall of their people, giving some of the rst warnings about the Legion The strong familial bonds the ogrun tribes once shared became to Rhul and northern Khadoran cities. Unfortunately, these meaningless once the blight took hold, as siblings battled one warnings were too late for for the hundreds of ogrun in the north another for supremacy like a pack of rabid wolves. In the rst who were already fully consumed by blight. few months following the blighting, the ogrun underwent a chaotic and deadly period as a new way of life arose from the The ogrun did not respond to the dragon’s blight in the same way as the Nyss. Everblight’s time studying t he elves of Ios and ashes of the old. The elderly or inrm were cut down and their esh consumed, leaving only the hardiest and most violent the Nyss, including their inherent vulnerabilities, had allowed alive. War chiefs arose and demanded the loyalty of those him to carefully shape how his essence interacted with their weaker than them. All the while, Everblight observed as his new esh. The ogrun were another matter entirely, their bodies less warriors evolved. When the blighted ogrun took their place in suited for his blight. He was forced to utilize more brute force in his methods, inicting drastic and unpredictable change his armies, the dragon could not have been more pleased with the nal result. upon them. The eect on the ogrun’s minds was even more
TRAINING Before being blighted, the northern ogrun tribes brought into the Legion of Everblight had a long and noble tradit ion of martial training. Fledgling warriors would apprentice with experienced champions, learning the ghting techniques and philosophy of their masters. This arrangement allowed young ogrun to quickly develop tried and tested skills under close scrutiny while simultaneously preserving traditions of warfare that extended back to the time of the Molgur. Theirs was a more balanced and reserved approach to battle, which assured that as ogrun developed prociency in combat, they also learned the restraint to not wage war recklessly or needlessly. That all changed with Everblight’s Everblight’s touch. Even the ogrun ogr un traditions that continued were corrupted. Whereas in the past, a master accepted only students who showed themselves capable of handling the responsibility martial skill demanded, now they required the young to learn how to kill kil l regardless of temperament. All semblance of restraint rest raint and philosophy were cast aside in favor of all-out and brutal combat. The relationship between mentor and students transformed into an abusive, violent practice that left as many young ogrun wounded or dead as not.
Blighted ogrun begin the process of training for war at a very young age. Though few generations have arisen in the years since the blight, the youths who have emerged in that time routinely receive physical punishment from their elders to toughen them up. A child incapable of enduring this pain is cast aside without a second thought. Pitiless ghting is commonplace and encouraged among the juvenile member s of a tribe. Young ogrun assert dominance by breaking potential rivals, sometimes literally, and are rewarded for doing so. An ogrun’s rst kill is often achieved by claiming the life of a tribemate, which earns the esteem needed to become a member of a war party part y. Ogrun have begun to demonstrate a fecundity similar to that of the blighted Nyss, with youths maturing at an accelerated rate. New generations generations of warriors are being trained up in all of the various tribes. Tribal elders consider it paramount to maintain strength of numbers and to replace those who fall in battle. A new tradition has arisen in recent years of feasting on the esh of these fallen ogru n. Aspiring warriors each consume some of the dead ogrun’s ogrun’s esh in the t he hopes of retaining the strength of the dead. Ogrun champions in particular are sought out and fed, bit by by bit, to members members of the next generation generation so that the young young will gain a portion of their strength. This practice is supported in ogrun eyes by the recurrence of specic physical physical deformities, such as the size si ze and conguration of horns, that manifest in a youth after consumption of dead esh. There is a belief that this practice concentrates concentrates the blight, thus augmenting the blessings of Everblight.
Some black ogrun chieftains feel the blight strongly enough to sense nearby adversaries without relying on their eyes.
LIFE AMONG THE BLIGHTED OGRUN The blighted ogrun are consumed by a need to kill. What few vestiges of their culture remain are dedicated to this essential truth. These ogrun gain relief from the buzzing madness in their skulls only when cleaving through the esh of an enemy in battle. Between skirmishes they can be found sitting idly, murmuring incoherent words and staring into the darkness, or feverishly battling one another in constant tests of strength. An ogrun’s madness can manifest in many ways, including a gluttonous obsession with raw esh or a desire to inict pain on oneself or others. In all cases, however, there is a destructive component to this madness—one ogrun might delight in the sound of splintering bones, another might xate on the feeling of freshly spilled blood on bare skin. The most crazed among them are like mad dogs, biting and clawing at anyone who draws too near before returning to a twitching state of reverie. The blighted Nyss treat most ogrun like rabid beasts of war, not as fellow warriors. They are seen as reeking, unpredictable weapons to be pointed at the enemy. enemy. Only a handful of war chiefs and other individuals can maintain enough coherent thought to be interacted with in any meaningful way, so these ogrun act as intermediaries between the greater Legion and their own tribes. War chiefs have little say in the broad strategy of the Legion, but most are given leave to lead their own tribemates as they see t. Only Thagrosh seems to hold hold these ogrun in i n any kind of esteem, and even he shows little love for them. This is perhaps because Thagrosh has transcended his previous form and race so thoroughly that the blighted ogrun are but a remi nder of the frail, mortal thing he once was. Still, there is an irrefutable connection between the Messiah of of Everblight Everblight and the throngs throngs of blighted blighted ogrun, and any who are still able to feel pride do so, for the god Everblight selected one of their kind to act as his greatest vessel and through Thagrosh speaks to the mortal world. Even minor recognition from Thagrosh is viewed as a signicant blessing, elevating the recipients rec ipients to positions of esteem among the blighted ogrun. Many of these are later selected as potential Chosen of Everblight, a powerful strain of blighted ogrun that bear the best qualities of their race and of Everblight’s dragonspawn. To a lesser degree, Kallus has also been accepted and is sometimes revered by some blighted ogrun, viewed as akin to an ospring of Thagrosh though he does not resemble either ogrun or the Messiah. Faith remains important to the ogrun, but their sacraments now take the form of violent murder in Everblight’s name. Each kill on the battleeld is a sacrice by which an ogrun proves his or her worthiness to have received the blessing of blight. The most devout howl howl praise to t he dragon in battle, though their words emerge as incoherent sounds sou nds of rage and exultation. Beyond the battleeld, self-appointed priests lead their fellow ogrun in ritualistic chanting and bloodletting, often accompanied by the consumption of raw esh. Such rituals occur often, particularly
Thagrosh about to consume Pyromalﬁc's athanc.
Some blighted ogrun have taken up collecting the bones and skulls of the fallen, after the esh has been stripped away, and using them for totemic purposes. Many keep a piece of ogrun bone that bears prominent draconic barbs or other signs of transguration with them, viewi ng it as a conduit to Everblight. Everblight. They will periodically l inger over fallen dragonspawn dragonspawn to dip or coat th is bone in draconic blood so the blighted energies can seep i nto the porous surfaces. These bones serve se rve ak in to prayer talis t alismans, mans, a nd even the most mo st deranged of ogrun can calm thems elves after battle by holding one and staring at it, as if in meditation. One of the new traditions of the blighted blighted ogrun is the t he culling of their weak. Not every ogrun wounded in battle is able to recover, and those who cannot continue ghting for the tribe and in Thagrosh’s honor cannot be allowed to weaken the tribe. A war chief and his champions inspect and assess of all the tribe’s warriors following battle, battle, selecting those who will be culled. Wounded ogrun do not simply acquiesce to their own murder, however, and often ght more viciously than would be expected. Those who are still able to fend o their executioners are given leave to keep ghting for the Legion as long as they are able. Any
Because of their unpredictable nature, the blighted ogrun are often isolated from the Nyss in the Legion of Everblight. Their encampments are typically set apart from the main camp, far enough from the Nyss that the constant howling and the stink of old blood do not become unbearable. A blighted ogru n camp is a meager place made up of haphazard tents, w ith crude totems to Everblight and Thagrosh dotting the center where once a statue of Dhunia might have stood. The ogrun seem to enjoy decorating their camps with grisly trophies, often hanging skulls near the rugs they use to meditate so as to enjoy the sight of their defeated foes. Other trophies are taken from particularly notable opponents—the pelt of a war pwolf, say, say, or the horns horn s of a powerful satyr—to demonstrate an ogrun’s accomplishments. These items are often worn in battle but are also used to decorate whatever place an ogrun claims as their own. Carrion birds infest these places as well, picking scraps of rotted esh where they can nd them, often becoming blighted in the process after feasting on the torn bodies of fallen ogrun. The blighted ogrun do not perceive such pests as a threat and thus pay them little mind, which only encourages the ocks to increase in number.
BLIGHTED OGRUN UNITS WAR WARMONGERS MONGERS Warmongers make up the bulk of blighted ogrun forces serving the Legion of Everblight. Their already formidable strength has been augmented by blight to make them terrif ying combatants who mow mow through opponents with their heavy warcleavers. Warmongers are blight-bred for slaughter. Their mad eyes constantly r eect the twisted hallucinations they endure night and day, and they emit a putrid odor as if the lingering stench of death has seeped into their very being. Completely incapable incapable of sleeping, idle warmongers often chant to themselves in low tones and stare obsessively at some vision unseen by others, their faces twisted twi sted with seething seeth ing menace. Only battle brings them true release. Divorced from any sense of self-preservation, they can withstand brutal punishment unbothered by pain. While all blighted ogrun warmongers can goad themselves into a killing frenzy, some few are strong and willful enough to become war chiefs, rising by strength to lead the converted tribes. Warmonger war chiefs are ruthless and goad their clanmates to ght harder. They are not skilled tacticians, however, preferring to lead a warband from the front lines and inspire by example. The scent of blood lends a war chief strength, and some cannot help but pause in the midst of combat to chew on hunks of freshly severed esh or qua blood pouring fresh from a wound.
WARSPEA WARSPEARS RS Once, the warspears served ogrun tribes as hunters in the frozen forests and peaks of the north. In battle, phalanxes of warspears provided ranged support to the melee warriors of the tribe. Before the blight, these ogrun might have been great stalkers of prey dedicated to keeping their people fed and supplied, but the dragon’s dragon’s corruption has tur ned them from noble hunters to cold, ruthless warriors. Their skills having been honed through countless conicts, they are consummate killers that exult in the slaughter they bring with the points of their massive spears. Blighted ogrun warspears experience the madness of blight dierently from the warmongers. While warmongers are driven by powerful bloodlust, warspears enjoy testing their strength against formidable adversaries in a sick form of sport. They disdain lesser prey like humans in favor of warpwolves, warjacks, and similarly challenging opponents, taking great pleasure in pinning a foe with a well-thrown spear before closing to nish o their hapless victim in close combat. Despite these gruesome entertainments, warspears are sane and clever compared to the twisted warmongers. The two breeds often ght side by side, and rivalr r ivalries ies are ar e inevitable. inev itable. Warspears Warspear s occupy a precarious middle ground bet ween the warmongers and the chiefs of the collect ive blighted og run, run , passi ng orders to t he vassals vassa ls leading individual bands. Warspear chieftains direct their warriors on the battleeld to strike down the most dangerous opponents, and they oer these kills as a sacrament to the dragon. Rising to the rank of chieftain of the warspears requires an ogrun to possess the keenest of killer instincts, and they stand as perfect examples of their murderous people.
CHOSEN OF EVERBLIGHT The Chosen of Everblight are a special strain of blighted ogrun tran sformed by the eect of blighted blood, similar to the succubus of the Nyss. When ogrun demonstrate sucient worthiness to the dragon, usually through feats like slaughtering an enemy leader or protecting a warlock from otherwise certain destruction, they are granted the chance to become one of the Chosen. Not every ogrun singled out in this way will join the ranks of this elite group. An ogrun is given a draught of a warlock’s blighted blood while Nyss sorcerers perform a complex ritual in order to awaken greater transformation within the ogrun’s esh. Of all the ogrun given this chance, most die
1 Thagrosh, the Messiah Blighted Ogrun Warlock PIP 73033 2 Absylonia, Terror of Everblight Blighted Nyss Warlock PIP 73034
3 Anamag the Doom Feaster Blighted Ogrun Warlock PIP 73111 4 Carnivean Heavy Warbeast PIP 73057 5 Ravagore Heavy Warbeast PIP 73057 6 Typhon Heavy Warbeast PIP 73035 7 Blightbringer Gargantuan Warbeast PIP 73088
8 Blighted Ogrun Warspears Unit PIP 73041
9 Warspear Chieftain Blighted Ogrun Command Attachment PIP 73076 10 Ammok the Truthbearer Blighted Ogrun Solo PIP 73113 11 Spell Martyr Solo PIP 73053
as the blood burns through their innards and causes their esh to warp into twisted abominations. One in a great number, however, achieves the full transformation Everblight desires. These ogrun experience fundamental physical changes. Their bodies break and reform dramatically, melding the shape of the ogrun with that of a four-legged dragonspawn. The transformation is bloody and painful, and it strips any remaining vestige of identity from the ogrun’s mind. This petty sacrice is made gladly, because once a Chosen arises from the steaming afterbirth of its reshaping, it towers above all others of its race as a fusion of rider and mount. A layer of hardened scales covers the lower half of their muscular bodies, making them as durable as a heavy warhorse in metal barding. The transformation hones t he Chosen of Everblight’s madness, instilling something almost like a mirror of sanity in them. They gain a calculated cunning akin to that of nephilim dragonspawn and represent an ideal transformation of the blighted ogrun. In them, Everblight sees his workmanship realized as it was among the Nyss, the ogrun rened into perfect vessels to execute his desires. Packs of the Chosen speed across the battleeld in great leaps, ripping the esh of their foes with hooked talons or hacking them apart with pole cleavers. The Chosen are voracious as they feast on the bodies of the dead,
BLIGHTED ROTWINGS Flocks of scavengers called rotwings follow the bloody trail of the blighted ogrun. These carrion birds subsist on the carnage the ogrun leave behind. Their powerful beaks easily rip esh and muscle from carcasses and can crack open skull and bones to reach brain matter and marrow. A rotwing’s gastric acid is corrosive enough to digest metal, and a ock can strip a battleeld of corpses in just a few days. In the north, rookeries of rotwings scour the mountains for the carcasses of fallen animals, but the constant intertribal warfare of the region has conditioned many ocks to seek out battle sites for the bounty of carrion it provides. Over the course of many skirmishes, rotwings ingest large amounts of blighted esh from fallen dragonspawn and ogrun, causing the birds to themselves become blighted. The blighted ogrun pay unblighted birds little mind, but once a ock bears the mark of Everblight they are seen almost as partners in slaughter and treated more akin to northern hunting hawks. Some ogrun even treat the rotwings as familiar and loyal pets, which is highly uncharacteristic for such blight-crazed killers.
MODELS 1 Kallus, Devastation of Everblight Warlock PIP 73105 2 Blighted Rotwings Unit PIP 73110 3 Scythean Heavy Warbeast PIP 73057
2 2 3
4 Golab Heavy Warbeast PIP 73109
5 Absylonia, Daughter of Everblight Blighted Nyss Warlock PIP 73080 6 Proteus Heavy Warbeast PIP 73097 7 Chosen of Everblight Blighted Ogrun Unit PIP 73114
8 Hellmouth Unit PIP 73099
6 8 7
9 Thagrosh, Prophet of Everblight Blighted Ogrun Warlock PIP 73066
10 Blighted Ogrun Warmongers Unit PIP 73069
11 Gorag Rotteneye Blighted Ogrun Warmonger Command Attachment PIP 73112 12 The Forsaken Solo PIP 73018 13 7 10
13 Warmonger War Chief Blighted Ogrun Solo PIP 73038
LEGENDS OF THE BLIGHTED OGRUN
AMMOK THE TRUTHBEARER Hunched over by the weight of black iron he bears, the blighted ogrun Ammok the Truthbearer Truthbearer is a herald of Thagrosh and self-appointed high priest of the new messiah. Speaking in the tongue of a mad seer, the Truthbearer Truthbearer prophesies destruction for all enemies of Everblight. Everywhere Everywhere he goes, his burden oozes a palpable miasma of energies that taints the world and corrupts all that it touches.
The relic Ammok bears was originally manufactured manufactured to augment the necromantic power of the Lords of Morrdh, but Everblight discovered that its powers could be used to manipulate other energies, including his own. Grav Graven en with runes of power whose true purpose was lost with the fall of the Black Kingdom, its occult properties are unlike those of any other artifact from that ancient realm.
Malihedron, ancient source of Morrdic power
For centuries the dragon coveted this relic, known as the Malihedron, but had no means to attain it. The Malihedron Malihedron radiates an aura of necromantic anguish that would unravel the mind of anyone he sent after it, causing those afflicted to claw out their own eyes and rip free their tongues in an ecstasy of dark magic. Everblight sent a number of disposable pawns to attempt its recovery, recovery, but each one failed and was destroyed. The device even affected the limited minds of dragonspawn, severing them from their masters. Even after the dragon plundered the ruins of Morrdh for other relics, such as Thagrosh’s blade Rapture and the
Unquestionably the most intricate and advanced example of Morrdhic fabrication ever unearthed
weapons of the hex hunters, the Malihedron taunted him from its dark vault.
Morrdhic runes of necromantic power (authentic)
Everblight’s fortunes changed when he found Ammok. The ogrun had once been a mad mountain hermit dwelling on an isolated peak east of the Shard Spires. Upon being blighted, the ogrun became worshipful and violent as all blighted ogrun do, but he also experienced a unique form of madness. His twisted mind turned inward, dedicated less to bloodthirsty pillaging than to howling praises of Everblight. The dragon perceived that Ammok’s oddly skewed perspective might let him succeed where others had failed. Accordingly, Thagrosh sent Ammok to claim the Malihedron from its resting place, framing the mission as a holy quest. Eager to obey his new korune and god, Ammok left the Legion and vanished for years. Everblight thought him discovere discovered d and destroyed, but against all odds the ogrun eventually returned, the great prize in tow. Ammok’s madness had indeed shielded him, just enough to bear to touch the Morrdhic relic. His mind was not unchanged, however, as his spiritual visions and delusions have only amplified. He enters into deranged chants in the height of battle and refuses to allow any others to touch the Malihedron. All the while, Everblight experiments with the effects of sending his
Moderately useful club
energies through the device, seeking to unlock even greater powers from within.
LEGENDS OF THE BLIGHTED OGRUN
ANAM ANA M AG THE DOOM FEASTER FEASTE R The bloated, putrescent warlock known as the Doom Feaster is a true scourge upon western Immoren. Accompanied by her overgrown rotwing Golab, Anamag brings death to all who stand against the Legion of Everblight.
Anamag’s origins are known to few. few. Once, she was an elder of the Stonemark clan of ogrun in the Bitewind Peaks among the Rimeshaws of northeastern Khador. She sought visions to guide her clan, reading omens in the winter stars above the mountains and in the flights of birds as they moved across the sky. She was a devoted priestess of Dhunia who found great joy in the fruits of the mother, mother, from the bounty of food her people gleaned from the tough soil to the throngs of children and grandchildren she had been graced with.
All that changed with the coming of Thagrosh, Everblight’s living host. Everblight swept through the wild northern ogrun clans, visiting blight
Aeric runes empowered after Anamag threatened to eat several Nyss sorcerers
upon them. When Anamag was first touched with blight, it filled her with an insatiable hunger, making acute and grotesque that which once drew her closer to Dhunia. Her sons and daughters became twisted warmongers who slaughtered and died in Everblight’s name.
Anamag was wholly consumed by the blight. She desired ever more of the corrupt flesh, ingesting the bodies of all her clan who fell in war. It bestowed on her a mad kind of vision and a drive unlike that of any other blighted ogrun. Her hunger led her to cut down dozens of rivals and greedily consume their hearts, including several of her own sons. She wished to replace her fallen progeny with new and better children who shared her devotion to Thagrosh and her transformed flesh, so she began to take husbands from among the most bloodthirsty war chiefs. When a mate inevitably proved unworthy, Anamag would dispatch him and impale his head on her pike. Three times she has done this, and through an unforeseen effect of blighted energy—or perhaps Anamag’s precarious sanity—the heads of Olgraf, Erradrul, and Targrash periodically animate, offering
Various memorabilia of past meals
equal parts cruel jeering and ambiguous prophecy to their former bride.
Desiring an individual to better keep the disparate ogrun tribes in line, Everblight saw fit to forge Anamag into one of his warlocks. With this gift, Anamag gained the ability to wield magic, which had so long been denied her. She
claimed the title of Doom Feaster upon her elevation to the station of warlock and indulged in a great feast of raw flesh, each body she devoured further enhancing her arcane prowess.
LEGENDS OF THE BLIGHTED OGRUN
GORAG ROTTENEYE The cruelest and most vile of warmongers, Gorag Rotteneye has killed more foes than any other blighted ogrun alive. Even among a group known for violence and brutality, Gorag’s enthusiasm for wanton slaughter sets him apart. In battle, he drives the warmongers of his clan to unthinkable heights of cruelty cruelty,, for Gorag slays whichever among them claims the fewest fewe st heads as trophies once a battle is won.
Favorite Favorite skull trophies
Extended great mace
The transformation Everblight’s corruption causes varies among the ogrun. While all become insane, powerful, and violent, some receive other, stranger gifts. So it is with Gorag. When he was first touched by blight, Gorag began to suffer a ceaseless, blinding pain in his right eye. Day and night it plagued him, drilling deeper into his head even as his flesh reshaped itself and massive horns sprouted from his skull. After
Asymmetrical blighted horns consistent with haphazard ogrun blight
days of unending agony, agony, Gorag gouged out his own eye and ate the tattered flesh, leaving behind a bloody wound that would never fully heal. Though he lost his eye, Gorag’s transformation transformation bestowed on him a different sort of gift to compensate for it. The gaping hole that once held his eye now emits a wicked, blighted radiance. Gorag can still see, in a sense, through this “rotten eye,” though the blighted vision only further increases his rage. This ability served Everblight well, for when the dragon alliance began hunting the Legion, Gorag’s blighted socket thrummed in agony agony,, alerting nearby warlocks of approaching danger danger.. Since then, Gorag and his followers have been sent ahead of Legion forces to root out potential threats to leading warlocks before the arrival of the main army columns.
Second-favorite skull trophies
Both gift and curse, Gorag’s b lighted sight helped him rise within the brutal warmonger hierarchy. hierarchy. More important, any who come under his withering gaze in battle become enervated as b lighted energies radiate through them, making them easier targets for the o grun’s murderous fury. fury. Hundreds of champions have been slain by Gorag’s massive mace after falling victim to his baleful regard.
Other eye (normal)
LEGENDS OF THE BLIGHTED OGRUN
GOLAB Blight-extended neck spurs
Estimated thirty-sixfoot wingspan Reputed to have poor self-grooming habits
With a gargled shriek, the unclean beast known as Golab dives from the heavens to feast on the flesh of the dead and dying. Its huge, avian form crawls with parasites, and the dead skin sloughing off its body leaves a trail of blighted waste wherever it flies. It is a
Opaque eye does not impair vision.
living testament to the corruption and devastation that can be brought about by even the finest motes of dragon blight.
Golab is an unusual specimen of the northern scavenger scavenger birds called rotwings. Much larger than any others of its breed, the beast was a favored pet of the ogrun seer Anamag. After her b lighting, Anamag enjoyed force-feeding force-feeding the beast bits of blighted flesh, including some of the bodies of her three favorite favorite husbands. In time, the flesh of Golab became so infused with blight that it molted out of its rotting skin. The rotwing shed again and again as it underwent a series of grotesque transformations. After many cycles of this ghastly rebirth, Anamag discovered that she could feel the spirit of Golab, just as she could touch the minds of normal dragonspawn. The Doom Feaster had somehow managed to forge a warbeast of her own creation, and had done so in a way utterly different from the normal method of creating spawn through the shedding of draconic blood.
In battle, Golab is truly a terror to behold. It shreds prey apart with its massive talons before feasting upon their open wounds with its oversized beak. Blighted energy permeates the beast, sickening nearby foes and withering any restorative magics in its vicinity. Wounded prey are afforded no mercy as Golab and any nearby rotwings descend upon the injured like a cloud of death to tear meat from bone. Some spawning vessel acolyths are less than fond of Golab and its kin, as their greedy consumption of meat leaves little raw material to birth new dragonspawn. Anamag is seldom seen without Golab by her side. She seems to enjoy sharing bits of her meals with the creature, even letting it to pluck scraps of food out of her own mouth. Whether she also takes pleasure in allowing the foul insects and other blighted parasites on the beast to crawl on her is unknown, but the tainted vermin that call Golab home are often seen scuttling on Anamag’s skin and among the folds of her robes. This blight-born horror might unintendedly herald an important new evolution for the Legion of Everblight, as now all natural beasts can potentially find use battling for the dragon. It is still unclear if the process that birthed Golab can be successfully replicated, but the very idea fills other Legion warlocks with both anticipation of possible new weapons and disdain for the blasphemy of creation outside of the dragon’s designs.
INFAMOUS BLIGHTED OGRUN WARBANDS The minds of all blighted ogrun are clouded by madness and bloodlust, but for some that insanity takes a distinct form. Together Together these ogrun form unique warbands warbands united by their shared psychosis. Some warbands have achieved notoriety so great that their names evoke terror throughout western Immoren.
“Feast on Their Bones”
“In Agony Is Also Ecstasy”
“A Broken Tusk Can Never Bite”
THE MARROW EATERS
THE TUSK BREAKERS
The Marrow Eaters are united by thei r intense compulsion to devour the esh of sentient beings. But this hunger can never be sated, and the gnawing pai n they feel makes them ght with a mad frenzy i n an eort to obtain more meat. United under the control of Anamag the Doom Feaster, Feaster, these blighted ogr un pick the battleeld clean of its dead. After they are done choking down the esh of their kills and their fallen companions, the ogrun crack open both skull and bone to suck clean t he marrow marr ow within. with in. The dead are left as little more than stripped and shattered skeletons.
The transformation of dragon blight takes many dierent forms among the ogrun. Some grow great clusters of sharpened bone that pierces through muscle and skin as well as thorny crowns of horns. The Thornhide warband gathers those most aicted with this condition. Warmonger chieftain Utak the Horned discovered that the agony of these bone barbs drives his warmongers into berserk rage that can only be sated through the massacre of other beings.
The Tusk Tusk Breakers warband i s made up of blighted ogrun who harbor a deep, visceral loathing of those tribes that have not yet experienced dragonblight. Their war chief Yokut the Vile leads them in raids on free ogrun, killi ng the tribe’s korune and enslaving the young to become new converts to Everblight’s Everblight’s worship. Warriors Warriors who defeat an unblighted defender ceremonially snap o the tusks of fallen foes and wear them as badges of honor.
“We Wear Your Blood with Pride”
THE NIGHT HOWLERS
THE CRIMSON GUARD
The warband called t he Night Howlers suer from an oddly unique form of madness. All blighted ogrun need little sleep, but the warmongers in this warband enter into a strange state of frenzy during the hours of darkness. Not one among them is able to sp eak while in the grip of this mania, instead splitting the air with bone-chilling war cries that cause their throats to bleed from strai n. The Night Howlers Howlers descend on unsuspecting villages like a pack of hungry wolves, the sound of their deranged cries leaving all within to tremble in fear of impending death.
The Crimson Guard is an elite warband selected from blighted ogrun whose madness drives them to revel above all in the spilling of blood. Commanded by the warmonger Ar-Chuk Bloodmane, these ghters stink with the gore of a thousand battles, and they wear the layers of crusted blood on their skins with strange pride. Each member ceremonially bathes in gore that has been sanctied by crazed worshippers of Everblight, believing it puries them and makes them impervious to harm. Following battle, each member of the warband oers up a vessel of blood claimed from an enemy warrior to Bloodmane, who shares the
When madness permanently robs a warspear of speech, that individual is welcomed among the Silent. Made up entirely of mute warriors, these warspears are a grim shadow in war, moving quietly at the periphery of a battle to ing their hissing spears into unsuspecting foes. The Silent are particularly unsettling to face on the battleeld because not even mortal mortal injuries will cause them to cry out. Though they communicate only through simple signs and gestures, they are among the most clever and skillful of all the blighted ogrun warbands.
PAINTING THE BLIGHTED OGRUN BLIGHT
B: BEAST HIDE
B: TROLLBLOOD HIGHLIGHT
S: BROWN INK
H: ’JACK BONE
H: FROSTBITE + CARNAL PINK
LEATHER B: GUN CORPS BROWN S: BROWN INK
H: HAMMERFALL KHAKI
B: FROSTBITE S: TROLLBLOOD HIGHLIGHT
H: MORROW WHITE
B: ’JACK BONE S: EXILE BLUE + BATTLEFIELD BROWN H: MENOTH WHITE HIGHLIGHT
PLATINUM ARMOR B: PIG IRON
B: THAMAR BLACK
S: COAL BLACK
H: COAL BLACK
H: RADIANT PLATINUM
THORNHIDE B: HAMMERFALL KHAKI S: BASTION GREY H: ’JACK BONE
MARROW EATERS B: FROSTBITE + UNDERBELLY BLUE
BLIGHTED OGRUN WARSPEAR
NIGHT HOWLERS B: GREATCOAT GREY
S: BASTION GREY
S: GREATCOAT GREY + THAMAR BLACK
H: SICKLY SKIN
H: BASTION GREY
INFAMOUS BLIGHTED OGRUN WARBANDS THE MARROW EATERS
SKIN: HAMMERFALL KHAKI
ARMOR: THAMAR BLACK
ARMOR: MENOTH WHITE BASE
CLOTH: SANGUINE BASE
CLOTH: SKORNE RED
FUR: MORROW WHITE
SPATTER: RED INK + BROWN INK
THE TUSK BREAKERS SKIN: BASTION GREY + BEATEN PURPLE ARMOR: THORNWOOD GREEN
THE NIGHT HOWLERS SKIN: GREATCOAT GREY ARMOR: EXILE BLUE
GOLD: SOLID GOLD
CLOTH: THAMAR BLACK + HAMMERFALL KHAKI
CLOTH: IDRIAN FLESH
STEEL: PIG IRON
THE CRIMSON GUARD
SKIN: UNDERBELLY BLUE
SKIN: MORROW WHITE
ARMOR: TROLLBLOOD HIGHLIGHT
ARMOR: TROLLBLOOD HIGHLIGHT
CLOTH: SKORNE RED + BATTLEFIELD BROWN
CLOTH: SICKLY SKIN
FUR: GREATCOAT GREY
EFFECTS OF THE LEGION
METAL: RADIANT PLATNUM
WEAPONS WE APONS & EQUIPMENT As the frontline shock troops of the Legion of Everblight, the clans of blighted ogrun go to war with better and more standardized equipment than their unblighted cousins. Their weapons and armor are made by skilled Nyss smiths, who utilize cunning metalworking techniques to create ne steel from limited resources. This relationship is important because, unlike free ogrun, the blighted ogrun have little ability to manufacture their own equipment. Their madness prevents them from taking on tasks that require intense focus and attention to detail. This is not to say the blighted ogrun cannot appreciate the ne workmanship of their equipment; quite the contrary, these brutes take great pride in wielding the weapons the Nyss bestow upon them.
PERSONAL EQUIPMENT Blighted ogrun have few pursuits other than warfare, and this is reected in the equipment they possess. Blighted ogrun eschew comforts found among other cultures, even those common among their unblighted kin. They have no need for knives or cooking vessels because they gain their sustenance directly from the bodies of the dead or from whatever they can dig out of the ground while on the march. Their encampments rarely consist of more than a few furs scattered beneath hide tarps. Blighted ogrun sleep but briey in ts and starts, and these simple furs act as rugs where they can stare into emptiness and consider murders to come. Beyond whetstones and oil to keep their blades honed and tools to repair armor when it becomes damaged, the blighted ogrun tribes live spare lives without ornamentation aside from what is taken from the dead as trophies. The skulls of notable opponents are a common pri ze, and powerful ogrun often wear several of their greatest rivals as totems to ensure luck in battle.
ARMOR AR MOR & BATTLE DRESS Crafted by skil led Nyss armorers, the armor worn by blighted ogrun tribe s is also derived from the style of the Nyss. Nyss. This armor traditionally consists of overlapping sheets of boiled leathers riveted together and commonly includes steel vambraces and shin guards. Ogrun warmongers often wear skirts of chain or scale mail with heavier plate to protect their limbs, while warspears go to battle in lighter armor for greater mobility. The heavy plate of a warmonger is manufactured in the same laminated style as leather armor, with thicker layers on the lower edges where shorter opponents like humans are most likely to land a blow. Each layer is riveted together loosely to allow the plates to move uidly over one another. What is lost in protective capability is made up for in exibility in combat. Warmongers often ornament the knee, the elbow, or the back of the palm with short spikes. These additions increase the damage of their unarmed strikes while simultaneously mimicking the shape of the blighted spurs growing out of their esh.
Plated vambrace, pauldron, helmet and chained coif, all of blighted Nyss fabrication.
MELEE WEAPONS Most ogrun wield the traditional ogrun warcleaver, a nine-footlong polearm with a halberd-like head. A warcleaver weighs up to twenty pounds and has a sharp, single-edged blade nearly three feet long—ideal for both chopping and stabbing. The back of the warcleaver has one or more conical spikes that the wielder can use to pierce through thicker armor. The butt-spike of the weapon has a shorter nine- to twelve-inch blade most commonly used to nish o a downed foe, though it also allows for swift follow-up strikes in a skilled user’s hands. Even larger pole cleavers are now forged for t he Chosen of Everblight, with a blade far thicker and heavier than a standard warcleaver’s. warcleaver’s. These weapons are too big for even blighted ogru n to wield, but they serve well for the brutish, inelegant manner in which the Chosen ght: designed like a butcher’s blade, their only purpose is to hack an enemy to pieces. Instead of the standard warcleavers, the blighted ogrun warspears carry several six-foot-long hardwood spears. The traditional ogrun spear was used for both hunting and warfare, and is well suited for combat at range or up c lose. The broadhead blade blade has convex notches notches on either side, which allow a wound to close over the spear to keep it in place after striking a target. A conical counterweight on the butt of the spear balances the weapon for throwing. As is common among blighted beings, ogrun in the Legion tend to have grown some combination of sharp bone spurs, talons, elongated fangs, and horns. These natural weapons enhance the ogrun’s inborn toughness and augment unarmed combat, particularly in the case of the massive Chosen of Everblight. The Chosen’s Chosen’s talons and tails are comparable to those of most dragonspawn, giving them a decided edge when dealing death up close.
WARB WARBEAS EASTS TS Since few warlocks are counted among the blighted ogrun, the only direct dire ct contact they have with Everblight’s Everblight’s dragonspawn is with those under the command of the dragon’s chosen generals, who sometimes enlist tribes as ghting fodder. The blighted ogrun’s reactions to these dragonspawn vary from indierence, common among those ogrun too crazed to pay the warbeasts any attention, to reverence among those who view the beasts as embodied totems of Everblight himself. In the rare instance when blighted ogrun must interact directly with dragonspawn, there is often some friction. Both ogrun and dragonspawn are consummate killers, and they can and do view each other as competition for prey. In battle, the presence of dragonspawn simply inspires the ogrun to greater heights of savage ferocity, as if they were trying to prove to the beasts that they are the better killers.
Blighted ogrun wield a variety of heavy polearms, some fabricated by Nyss, others by the ogrun themselves. Ogrun repaired weaponry may incorporate unusual materials like blighted bone and more roughly hewn wooden shafts.
COMPANY COMPANY OF IRON
REQUISITION COSTS This table gives the requisition costs of the new Legion of Everblight models useable in Company of Iron games. The requisition cost of weapon attachments is not cumulative; use the cost listed regardless of the number of weapon attachments added to a unit. Tables for all Factions are updated as new models are released and can be b e found at privateerpress.com/ pr ivateerpress.com/rules. rules. Model count adjustment: If your opponent starts the game
with at least twice as many models in their army as you have, increase your hand size by one. If your opponent has at least three times as many models, increase your hand size by two.
Tony Konichek's blighted ogrun of the Blackfrost Spawn prefer to ambush their foes in the dead of night.
STATE OF WAR: BLIGHTED OGRUN
reduced or transferred, then the player rolls a d6. On a result of 1 or 2, choose a friendly model/unit to gain Pathnder for one turn, and remove d3 damage from the chosen model/unit. On a roll of 3 or 4, choose a friendly model/unit. The chosen model/ unit’s melee weapons gain Weapon Weapon Master for one turn. On a roll of 5 or 6, choose a friendly model. The chosen model gains Berserk, boosted attack and damage dam age rolls, and a nd +3 SPD, SPD, STR, MAT, DEF, and ARM. Remove the chosen model from play at the end of the turn.
Few sights in western Immoren are as intimidating as a concentrated assault launched by the blighted ogrun. With the inborn strength of a light warjack, enhanced by the crucible of dragon blight and ceaseless battle, they descend upon the enemy like hungry madmen. Those foes who are nished by the polearms and spears of these ogru n are lucky, lucky, for they are spared the horror of having their livi ng esh consumed before their eyes.
The terrain features described below provide thematic options to use in any narrative game of WARMACHINE and HORDES. You will want to discuss with your opponent how many pieces of thematic terrain you wish to use.
Where the blighted ogrun ght, pools of their spilled blood and mounds of their dead esh corrupt the land. These elds of blight can linger li nger for months, and those not touched by the dragon’s dragon’s gift gif t who linger within them are sapped of strength and vitality. Rules: A Blight Field terrain feature is represented by a 3 AOE template. template. Place d3 + 3 Blight Fields as one of your ter rain features for the game. A non-blighted model that begins its activation in a Blight Field suers –2 SPD, STR, MAT, RAT, DEF, and ARM and cannot run or charge for one round. ˝
BATTLEFIELD CONDITION: INTOXICATING FRENZY Blighted ogrun warriors descend into greater madness at the sight of blood and slaughter. Witnessing one of their own cutting down an opponent only serves to make them more vicious, more violent, more eager to massacre all enemies. condition rather than a terrain Rules: Intoxicating Frenzy is a battlefield condition feature. When a friendly model destroys an enemy warrior model with a melee attack, you gain an Intoxicating Frenzy token. During a friendly warrior model’s activation, it can spend these tokens to make additional melee attacks or to boost melee attack or melee damage rolls. While you have five or more Intoxicating Frenzy tokens, warrior models in your army gain Berserk and Tough
BLIGHTED OGRUN SCENARIO
The dragon Everblight Everblight appreciates the eectiveness of h is blighted attack during its Combat Action, immediately after the attack is resolved it must ogrun legions but holds little aection for them. He throws them make one additional melee attack against another model in its melee range.) into battle against overwhelming odds and insurmountable obstacles with seeming disregard, for to him they are simply living weapons with which to achieve his greater goals. But the blighted ogrun og run do not resent r esent t heir callous use—even use— even those still Carcass Heap sane enough to do so. In their mad eyes, each battle is another When blighted ogrun descend on their victims, they often leave opportunity to prove themselves to their god and master, bloody kill is a sacred ritual per formed in the haphazard piles of rotting carcasses in their wake. Dragonspawn Thagrosh, and each bloody dragon’s name. To die for the cause of Everblight is the greatest and rotwings will eagerly consume this putrefying esh, but to achievement a blighted ogrun can hope for, if that death brings those not tainted by blight the smell of decay is nauseating. the dragon closer to his ultimate and inevitable victory. Rules: A Carcass Heap terrain feature is r ough terrain and should be represented by a pile of of bodies or a viscera-strewn scene. NonNon- On the following page is a special narrative scenario that allows blighted living warrior models within withi n a Carcass Heap suer players to experience the frenzied intensity of a blighted ogrun –2 MAT, RAT, and DEF. A non-blighted living warrior model battle and the thr ill of bloodletti ng such warriors crave. starting an activation within a Carcass Heap cannot run or charge that activation. . (When a model with Berserk destroys one or more models with a melee
Blood Altar Everblight is a jealous and egotistical being, and he delights when his blighted ogrun build altars to his greatness, rewarding them with a greater measure of his vast power. Rules: A Blood Altar terrain feature is a 50 mm obstruction
that blocks LOS as if it were a large-based model. If a player’s warcaster or warlock is B2B with a Blood Altar at the start of their turn, the warcaster or warlock can make an oering. The model immediately takes d6 points of magical damage that cannot be
BLIGHTED OGRUN SCENARIO
FAT FATAL FEINT FEI NT
by Will Pagani
Legion of Everblight Theme Force
PRIMAL TERRORS When the blighted ogrun tribes go to war, they do so with the blessings of Everblight on their side. Fighting with little regard for personal safety, howling warbands descend upon their foes, crazed by the prospect of spilling blood for their war chiefs and their korune , Thagrosh. Even mor tal wounds suered in battle do not deter them. Instead, such injuries goad them to drive even deeper into the enemy’s heart to shed even more blood before they expire.
ARMY AR MY COMPOSITION An army made using this theme force can include only the following Legion models: • Legion warlocks
• Blighted Rotwing units
• Non-character warbeasts
• Hellmouth units
• Forsaken solos
• Blighted Ogrun models/units
• Spell Martyr solos
SPECIAL RULES • This army can also also include one Minion Minion solo and one Minion unit that will work for Legion. These models can be included even if they have the Partisan [Legion] special rule. Minion units in this army can include attachments. • For every full 20 points points of Blighted Ogrun and and Rotwing models/units models/units in this army, army, you can add one Hellmouth unit, one Blighted Ogrun command attachment, attachment, or one medium-based Blighted Ogrun solo to the army free of cost. Free models do not count toward the total point value of Blighted Ogrun and Rotwing models/units in the army when calculating this bonus. • Blighted Blighte d Ogrun Warmonger and Blighted Ogrun Warspear Warspear units in this army gain Vengeance. Vengeance. (During your Maintenance Phase, if one or more models in a unit with Vengeance Vengeance were damaged by enemy attacks during the l ast round, each model in the unit can advance 3 and make one basic melee attack.) ˝
• Your deployment deployme nt zone is extended 2 forward. ˝
FORCES OF KHADOR
THE ARMORED CORPS by Matt Goet z & Douglas Seacat, with Josh Colón
olstered by steel and steam, the Man-O-War are the foremost mechanized heavy infantry of the Iron Kingdoms. These elite warriors meld the might of machinery with Khador’s irrepressible patriotism and ghting spirit, bringing bringi ng ruin to those who oppose the Empire. To To be counted among the Man-O-War corps carries a special prestige because of the dedication, skill, and bravery required to pilot a suit of steam armor. Each of these soldiers must also meet certain strict physical requirements and are drawn from among the tallest and hardiest of Khadorans.
While the thick plating provides outstanding protection against an enemy’s attack, Man-O-War steam armor also brings its own set of unique dangers. A broken coupling can mean a slow and agonizing death as the armor lls with a scalding cloud; a ruptured boiler can end a Man-O-War’s life in the roar of a violent explosion. These iron-willed ghters go to war knowing that any one of a multitude of potential malfunctions could kill them as quickly as an enemy’s bullet or blade. Unlike other Khadoran military orders such as the Iron Fang and Winter Guard, the Man-O-War tradition is relatively new, having existed only for the last century and a half.
Yet in that time, many of the greatest champions and noble heroes of Khador have risen from their ranks to ght, and sometimes to die, in the name of the Motherland. Like knights of legend reborn as modern warriors for an ever-changing battleeld, each soldier in Man-O-War Man-O-War armor takes pride in the accomplishments of their peers and in the discipline they share. Man-O-War and their armor are inseparable components of a united whole. The mind of a living soldier is more cunning and adaptable than the cortex of a warjack, and patriotic duty can drive a soldier to accomplish what would be otherwise inconceivable. Yet the strength of machines and armor
can withstand puni shment beyond that of mere esh. By combining these qual ities, Khador has achieved a near-perfect union. The enemies of the Motherland tremble at the earthshaking advance of a Man-O-War kompany, for they know they ght against a foe that is resolute and almost impervious to their weapons.
ORIGINS Though steam-powered armor has existed for many centuries, it has only recently been integrated into organized groups of soldiers such as the Man-O-War of Khador. Prior to this development, steam armor was seen only in custom suits built exclusively for the use of individual warriors, with no common standards for manufacturing methods, size, or even materials. Each suit was as individual as its creator, and many dierent engineers developed unique solutions to problems common across all steam armor. It took some time for the makers of steam armor to combine their talents and their best ideas for power generation, weight compensation, and strengt h enhancements to produce a standardized suit of armor. The potential for steam armor was obvious, but it was necessity that drove its development into a branch of the military. Lacking a number of the rare natural resources required to fabricate
cortexes for its warjacks, Khador had long struggled to produce a sucient number of these expensive mechanikal brains. Even in areas where the required mi nerals and crystals were thought to exist, such as deep in Khador’s mountains, they were dicult and costly to extract and rene. These obstacles created a relatively low ceiling on cortex production even in the best-case scenarios. Accordingly, Accordingly, the Khadoran Army Ar my was forced to squeeze the maximum utility from the ’jacks it did have. While other nations had the luxury of producing lighter warjacks to ll the gap between soldier and steamjack, Khador had to house their scarce and precious cortexes in the most durable frames possible. This lack of light warjacks would take its toll in engagements like the Border Wars, where having smaller and more maneuverable warjacks would have helped the northerners contend with enemy machines like the Strider and Javelin, which could better negotiate the terrain and outmaneuver their heavier Khadoran counterparts.
Khador’s Khador’s High Kommand, the army’ ar my’ss governing body, body, put out the call to their foremost mechanikal engineers to nd a solution to this gap in the military’s strength. Many dierent suggestions were put forward, and found lacking, before senior mechanik Jachemir Venianminov submitted his preliminary design for Man-O-W Man-O -War ar armor i n 470 AR. An avid student of history, Venianminov envisioned his Man-O-War as a modern incarnation of the heavily armored Bastion knights and the original mounted drakhun who fought beside PriestKing Khardovic Kh ardovic long ago. These heroes wore armor that was considered impractical for all but the strongest of warriors; in fact, the ancient drakhun were literally unable to ght once unhorsed. But Venianminov knew steam power could make possible what raw muscles could not. So, while the southerners were embroiled in civil war against their Menite citizens, Khador seized the opportunity to devote its military production to fabricating the rst standardized suits of steam armor. Within seven years, two full kompanies of Man-O-War soldiers marched out of t he Rigevnya complex in Korsk in a military parade that demonstrated Khador’s new contribution to mechanized warfare.
Man-O-War had their rst true test during the First Thornwood War, War, when King Rusla n Vygor committed to his campaign against Cygnar through the dense forest. The ghting conditions in the Thornwood were a perfect trial of the steam armor. While Berserkers and Juggernauts tore through the forest to create the t he Warjack Road, the more mobile Man-O-War shocktroopers marched through the trees at their anks. The Man-O-War allowed Khador to penetrate deeper into the forest than would otherwise have been feasible, proving themselves an ideal complement to the massive ’jacks of the north. A generation later, Supreme Kommandant Vestrivor Secheko further developed the Man-O-War with the creation of the Demolition Corps. In the early 500s AR, Secheko demanded a new set of armament and training to provide Man-O-War with the tools to tear down the fortications of his nation’s many foes. He thus set in motion a long series of renements and new weapons suites that conti nue to this day, day, as Man-O-W Man-O -War ar armor was a suitable platform for any numb er of dierent loadouts.
Man-O-War underwent further renement thanks to the ingenuity of Simonyev Blaustavya. Prior to his role as the premier industrialist of Khador and regent for a young Ayn Vanar XI, Blaustavya was an accomplished battle mechanik The rst generation of Man-O-War were conscripted from all assigned to the Khardic 21st Shocktroopers. In this role, he branches of the milita ry. Any soldiers who met the physical requirements for height and strength were put through a battery helped to rene many critical components of standard ManO-War armor, including a self-operating regulator handle to of grueling physical tests to determine their suitability. Of the maximize output while reducing the frequency of catastrophic many thousands who were subjected to these trials, fewer than failures. His best-known contribution to the Man-O-War, one in ten could satisfy the demands of their instructors. The however, however, was the modern shockt rooper shield can non, a number and diversity of recruits brought its own challenges— weapon that increases the overall battle ecacy of what would some had to completely relearn how to be soldiers in their new become the Assault Corps. role—but also gave the corps a wide range of disciplines and talents to draw upon. Former mechaniks taught former Iron Within a few years, the Man-O-War would expand to include Fangs the tricks needed to keep their armor functioning. The bombardiers as a type of light art illery support. By 530 AR, Iron Fangs in turn shared techniques for close-ranked melee this armor allowed for the reinvention of the ancient drakhun combat, while seasoned Winter Guard veterans taught both tradition of mounted Man-O-W Man-O -War—the ar—the u ltimate heavy cavalry. groups the discipline they would need while under enemy re. As the needs of the battleeld evolved, so too did the Man-OEach specialized group came together to create a unied force of War. War. It is an u nending process of renement and evolution, soldiers skilled in almost every facet of warfare. taking the best qualities of military traditions from the past and adjusting t hem to suit the t he advancements of the day. day. In The early steam armor of the Man-O-War was crude by time, the Man-O-War became one of the most prestigious and modern standards, but it fullled Venianminov’s vision of famous military orders in Khador and an undeniable example of nearly impervious soldiers. In eld tests, the armor was able Khador’s martial innovation. Given the diversity of its soldiery to turn aside most forms of small arms re, allowing troops to and arsenal of weapons, it was a natural evolution to create the cross contested territory through a hail of gunre. Even light Man-O-War division under newly promoted kommandants artillery shots could be deected by the thicker breastplate Kratiko and Arconovich, a force now entirely capable of selfand pauldrons of Man- O-War O-War armor. To counter the potential sustained operations. vulnerability of their more lightly armored limbs, Man-OWar were also equipped with large, thick shields. With this formidable protection and wielding a massive polearm, the rst Man-O-War proved to be durable and adaptable soldiers. Thus the shocktroopers were born, a tradition that would continue with only minor adjustments into the modern day.
MAN-O-WAR TRAINING Only the most outstanding individuals are chosen for admission to the Man-O-War training program. Potential recruits must meet stringent physical requirements, as all suits of armor are manufactured to accommodate a relatively narrow deviation in size. An aspiring recruit must be both solid and very tall, even by the standards of Khador, in addition to exhibiting strength and stamina. The standard desired height is six feet six inches, and those who deviate more than a few inches in either direction are considered unsuitable. Once selected, recruits endure a rigorous training program. Man-O-War armor is both expensive to produce and vital to Khador’s war eort, so trainees receive a full year of instruction before taking to the battleeld fully equipped—one of the longest such programs in the Iron Kingdoms. The rst month is dedicated to a barrage of physical tness tests and conditioning to weed out anyone who wil l not be able to endure the prolonged strain and exertion the steam armor demands. Subsequent months are devoted to familiarizing recruits with the complexities of their armor and the weapons they will wield in combat and to running trainees through a punishing course of exercises that test both physical and mental endurance. Learning how to ght in steam armor is one of the most critical challenges a potential Man-O-War faces. If used improperly, the mechanisms that enhance the wearer’s strength can instead shatter their bones. Moreover, if the burn rate and temperature of the suit’s boiler are not carefully controlled, the armor can cause lethal burns. Even minor mechanical failures can result in deadly breaches of steam that will cook a soldier alive.
Because of these dangers, al l Man-O-War are extensively trained in the in spection and maintenance of their equipment. They are expected to thoroughly examine their ar mor prior to donning it to ensure it is safe. Part of this train ing involves a skilled in structor selectively damaging the armor to test the trainee’s adherence to procedures—the type of damage that would cause potentially crippling injuries i f not identied and repaired prior to perform ing strenuous movements such as are required in battle. After qualifying for basic prociency with steam armor, recruits are sorted for suitability in dierent roles. Those demonstrating excellence in marksmanship are earmarked for the bombardiers, with others being sorted into either the Assault Corps or Demolition Corps based on their performance. The Demolition Corps emphasizes oensive tactics and prefers aggressive soldiers, while the Assault Corps values those who are patient and resolute. A select few recruits are given the opportunity to join the ranks of the drakhun, a discipline adapted from the cavalry traditions of the horselords. These mounted soldiers ride the impressive Karpathan destrier, the largest equine breed in the Iron Kingdoms. The key qualities of the drakhun are outstanding horsemanship and clear martial prowess despite the limitations imposed by the heavy armor. Though their numbers are small, serving among the drakhun is a privilege to which nearly every recruit in the Assault Corps aspires. Additionally, candidates with a proven skill in maneuvering and ghting in steam armor can be selected for the Tanker Corps and instructed in the use of even larger and heavier ManO-War armor. Those with superior mechanikal aptitude may be chosen to lead specialized teams of battle mechaniks who repair and maintain steam armor in the eld.
M AN-O-W AN- O-WAR AR TACTICS Man-O-War excel in assaulting hard targets, thanks to the durability of their armor. A kompany of such soldiers ght with the impact and tenacity of light warjacks, and in concentrated eorts there are few forces that can reliably repel them. The tactical doctrine of the Man-O-War division focuses on a steady advance into enemy-held territory. Steam armor being too cumbersome for swift redeployments or maneuvers, the division drills into its members the importance of closing with t he enemy and seizing the initiative through relentless forward progress. This approach is aided by support elements like the suppression tanker and the assault chariot. Both are able to maintain steady re on infantry positions, allowing phalanxes of Assault Corps Corps to weather a march across the battleeld. Bombardiers assist in this role as well, ring arcing shots from their grenade cannons i nto defensive positions to burn out defenders. Shocktroopers of the Assault Corps often form the vanguard of a Man-O-War attack. Advancing with locked shields, they endure the brunt of enemy counterattacks and screen the durable but somewhat more vulnerable members of the bombardiers and Demolition Corps. Upon contact with the enemy, these shocktroopers pin them in melee combat, allowing additional troops such as the Demolition Corps to reach their objectives. The role of the Demolition Corps is to neutralize heavy warjacks or bring down fortress walls, blockhouses, and other hard targets. They are assisted in their eorts by the ManO-War siege chariot and the strike tanker, both of which mount high-powered ordnance that makes short work of structures and warjacks.
When deployed as part of a combined-arms force of Winter Guard and other elements, Man-O-War often form a strong bulwark at the heart of the army, army, relying on more agile forces to protect their anks and provide assistance should they become encircled. When dedicated forces of Man-O-War take the eld, squadrons adopt a looser skirmish formation on contact with enemy infantry. Each soldier keeps an eye on the Man-O-War to either side in order to prevent swifter foes from attacking the more vulnerable reboxes and boilers at their backs. At times the standard line formations of the Man-O-War are ill-suited to face a certain enemy, such as when they go up against a force with similarly heavy infantry. In those rare circumstances, a kompany adopts a mixed-order formation, with staggered groups of close and ranged infantry anked by chariots and drakhun. The forward elements maintain a steady barrage of re on high-value targets while the mobile chariots and riders move to outank the foe, either striking at the periphery of the battle or trying to reach command units to sow chaos in the enemy ranks. Supply logistics ar e vital to any a ny Man-O-War kompany’s kompany’s success. Their armor demands a steady supply of coal and water to function, which can strain supply lines if the kompany extends deep into enemy territory. In addition, the armor requires frequent maintenance that often must be performed in large workshops. Wherever the kompany travels, a small a rmy of supply ocers, mechaniks, and specialists follows closely in their wake, usually no more than a half-mile behind the van. In prolonged engagements, the most experienced mechaniks take to the eld with the kompany, eecting battleeld repairs on damaged armor to keep the soldiers in the ght.
LIFE AS A MAN-O-W M AN-O-WAR AR The life of the Man-O-W Man-O -War ar diers from that of much of Khador’s Khador’s modern military. Given their elite status, Man-O-War soldiers are exempt from the more mundane aspects of army life, such as hauling supplies, maintaining fortications, clearing roads, and other menial tasks. While not on patrol or guard duty, most Man-O-War are given leave to pursue t heir own interests. These privileges and liberties, along with the prestige of their organization, create a certain friction between Man-O-War infantry and the Winter Guard. The former often view themselves as more important to the nation’s military success and therefore deserving of special treatment, while the latter can see their armored counterparts as simply arrogant, not to mention disdainful of the vital contributions of the Winter Guard in safeguarding the Motherland. Man-O-War barracks are unusual places, falling somewhere between standard army housing and a mechanik’s workshop. Among the usual bunks and footlocker s, the Man-O-War also have benches and tool chests so they can upkeep elements of their armor. Most of the soldiers have developed an above-average degree of mechanikal aptitude due to their reliance on steam armor, and even if a damaged suit has undergone repairs by a trusted battle mechani k, soldiers careful ly inspect each weld and replacement for signs of shoddy work. This is more than just paranoia, as the failure of a single component has the potential to leave a Man-O-War immobilized or broiled alive.
When they are not maintaining t heir steam armor, Man-O-War Man-O-War participate in frequent drill s. Ocers oversee training exercises t hat pit their soldiers against one another in mock combat, war war games, and even steam-armored wrestling matches designed to keep their ski lls honed. Kompanies have a standard suite of drills they employ, but kapitans will eventually develop a modied regimen i ntended to shore up whatever weaknesses they perceive in their u nits or to prepare for specic upcoming engagements. engagements. One longstanding informal tradition within the Man-O-War corps is the mentor relationship, in which one or more new recruits are taken under the wing of a veteran soldier. The mentor looks out for the young warriors, providing practical advice along with anecdotes about their own time in the ranks. These relationships are not a part of the formal training structure, and mentors avoid interfering with their recruits’ instructors or other superior ocers. A mentor serves as a friendly face among the more experienced troops to whom a recruit can turn for advice. These bonds often grow deep and can serve as something of a replacement family within the intensive atmosphere of the Man-O-War garrisons. Not every recruit has a mentor, but those who seek out such a guide can usually nd one.
Stasikov Palace in Korsk, home of Empress Ayn Vanar. This palace is guarded by the Ivory Guard, an elite Man-O-War honor guard.
NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MAN-O-WAR One of the unspoken truths about life as a Man-O-War is the toll steam armor takes on its wearers. On a long timeline, the joints of a Man-O-War break down as they are pulled unnaturally by the actuators of the armor’s limb mechanisms. In efforts to conserve coal, many soldiers dampen the burn rate of the armor’s boiler, forcing their bodies to bear increasing amounts of weight. Only a handful of Man-O-War can withstand this treatment for longer than a single tour of duty. Those who make this lifestyle their career generally suffer for it, even as each seeks to persist without complaint as long as they can endure, unwilling to go against the stoicism expected of these soldiers. The vast majority suffer chronic injuries that can significantly diminish quality of life and eventually take them off the battlefield entirely. In the long term, such wear takes its inevitable toll; arthritis is common, as are spinal injuries, bone degradation, and worse. By old age, eight in ten former Man-OWar are debilitated to a greater or lesser degree. The High Kommand is aware of this and takes measures to prevent the knowledge from spreading among the common citizens. The steam-armored soldiers serve as figures of propaganda for the Empire, and if the truth became known it would shed an unwanted light on the realities of fighting in the name of the Motherland. The invincible and implacable reputation of the Man-O-War soldier has become an iconic aspect of Khadoran military service, one the kommandants kommandan ts are unwilling to dispel. Retired Man-O-War are encouraged to move to communities of their own kind outside the major cities where their crippled bodies will not be visible to outsiders. These communities often contain multiple Skirov-style Skirov-style saunas, where the damaged veterans can gain some small relief from the aches and pains that plague them. Senior Man-O-War understand that should they survive war, they are likely to die in these isolated communities, surrounded by their own.
Sometimes commanding ocers make use of training squads for other tasks, harnessing their steam power for high-priority construction projects, garrison repairs, or similar jobs. This practice provides the benet of labor equivalent to dozens of light steamjacks while also facilitating increased familiarity with the Man-O-War rigs for those who are new to them. It has also become a common punishment for experienced soldiers deemed guilty of minor infractions, as veteran ManO-War consider such labor to be beneath them. Having an insubordinate shocktrooper forced to help in paving a road or hauling heavy loads for a few days will usually suce to reinstate proper discipline. In mixed kompanies, members of the dierent corps enjoy a friendly rivalry. The nature of these rivalries varies from kompany to kompany but often involve competitions that pit the premier members of the various groups against each other in tests of skill. ski ll. Chariot races are understandably understandably popular among groups with charioteers, while infantry tend to prefer boxing and similar unarmored sports. The ocial policy of the High Kommand is that such activities are wasteful and needlessly dangerous, but wise kapitans turn a blind eye to the competitive nature of their soldiers, at least once in a while. Victory in these contests boosts the winners’ win ners’ morale, morale, while the losers are motivated to improve their skills and ght even harder next time.
M AN-O-WAR AN-O-WAR UNITS BOMBARDIERS Armed with grenade cannons, the bombardiers are the mobile light artillery of the Man-O-War and their principal ranged infantry. In the numbers Man-O-War are traditionally elded, they can nd themselves overwhelmed by other infantry. The bombardiers are trained to lay down barrages of coordinated re in overlapping areas to thin out concentrations of enemy infantry and create safe areas for their fellow soldiers to traverse without fear of being swarmed.
CHARIOTEERS Charioteers provide the Armored Corps with much-needed mobile artillery and re support. While not quite as swift or as maneuverable as the lighter chariots elded by other nations, the standard Man-O-War chariot is as thickly armored as the soldier who controls it. Charioteers must manage not only the task of driving their vehicles but also the eective use of the heavy artillery they carry. These drivers ride at the anks of a kompany to provide supporting re when the Man-O-War are outnumbered, closing in to punch through concentrations of troops as the battle line advances. Charioteers are trained to perform bold pushes to exploit vulnerabilities of light enemy infantry. As troops like trencher infantry or Flameguard are forced to abandon their secure positions, assault chariots surge forward to trample foot regiments or to pin them in place with a stream of barrage gun re. Conversely, the larger siege chariots keep to more reserved tactics, steadily advancing while screened by infantry and under cover of smoke grenades until their target is within range of their main armament. They must position carefully to take full advantage of their heavy gun’ gu n’ss power, blowing blowing warjacks war jacks out of position and lobbing devastating shells into fortications to clear them of entrenched foes. Charioteers must learn to compensate for the slower reaction time imposed by their cumbersome armor. While the augmented strength allows them to manually operate the chariot’s heavy artillery, it takes a moment for the armor to build up pressure and respond resp ond to smaller movements. movements. The soldiers learn to anticipate the movement of their targets and to account for the speed of their vehicles in order to accurately time their shots. Because much of the pilot’s attention must be focused on operating the main weapon of the chariot, ManO-War rely on their horses to negotiate the battleeld with minimal gu idance. idance. The teams pulling these chariots are trained warhorses and are adept at weaving through—or mowing over—any barriers.
DEMOLITION CORPS The Demolition Corps makes up one of the two major branches of the Man-O-War. These soldiers are fully trained in the use of their steam armor and armament, but they have also extensively studied fundamental principles of engineering in order to better demolish all that the enemies of the Motherland have built. Wielding deadly mechanikal ice mauls but lacking some of the protection aorded to the Assault Corps’ shocktroopers, the Demolition Corps forms a strong second line of assault. These squadrons exploit breakthroughs the shocktroopers create in enemy formations, penetrating to attack high-value targets like elite infantry, fortications, and warjacks. Their ice mauls are devastatingly eective up close, and few opponents are able to withstand a coordinated Demolition Corps assault.
DRAKHUN Astride their towering Karpathan destriers, the Man-O-War drakhun are among the most impressive and intimidating soldiers in the corps. They are the swift hammer of retaliation against those who oppose the Motherland, and each among them is expected to be a master horseman and combatant. When battle is joined, the drakhun drak hun ride to areas where the Man-O-War Man-O-War are in danger of defeat. They crash through enemy infantry, bolstering Khador’s strength wherever it is most needed, and can intercept anking maneuvers before they can breach a defensive formation.
FORGE SEERS Clad in baroque, rune-inscribed steam armor, Forge Seers are potent masters of the arcane. These Greylords apply their knowledge of magic and mechanika to imbue the weapons of warjacks with the power needed to cut down unnatural foes, those who are more than mere esh and steel. Greylords are not an ocial component of the g reater Man-O-War corps, but at times they will embed with other steam-armored soldiers in order to carry out missions for the Covenant. Some Man-O-War kapitans resent the autonomy and authority of the Forge Seers, who can demand seemingly limitless resources and manpower of a kompany in order to pursue pur sue their objectives. However, However, the arcane might of the Forge Seers and the support they can provide to a kompany’s kompany’s warjack detai l tend to compensate for this inconvenience.
1 Kommandant Sorscha Kratikoff Man-O-War Warcaster PIP 33127 2 Lord Kozlov, Viscount of Scarsgrad Warcaster PIP 33118 3 Beast 09 Heavy Warjack PIP 33055 4 Destroyer Heavy Warjack PIP 33063 5 Man-O-War Shocktroopers Unit PIP 33084
Not every soldier in a kompany of Man-O-War is best suited to be a frontline frontline warrior. warrior. Some contribute to the war eort eort in other, other, more pragmatic ways. Dedicated teams of battle mechaniks go to war behind a screen of steam-armored Man-O-War, dealing with the constant minor adjustments and repairs the armor requires over prolonged combat. These mechaniks seldom carry weapons beyond beyond the tools tools needed to execute execute their labor labor,, and they they wear minimal armor ar mor except except for a thin steel cui rass. Battle mechanik ocers are trained to wear their own suits of steam armor, which they use to shield their more vulnerable subordinates, but ocers seldom appreciate soldiers who huddle in their shadow rather than boldly perform their duties.
When they rst took the eld, the steam armor of the Man-OWar was impervious to most conventional small arms re. But war drives technological innovation, and increasingly these soldiers found themselves imperiled by the heavier repower brought by warjacks and eld artillery. Man-O-War Man-O-War suppression tankers and strike tankers were developed in response to the more destructive armaments and engines of war that Khador now nds set against it.
MAN-O-WAR SHOCKTROOPERS Armed with long annihilator blades and devastating shield cannons, shocktroopers make up the bulk of the Assault Corps of Man-O-War. These troops form the vanguard of any ManO-War assault force, enduring a storm of attacks as they drive deep into hostile territory. Combining thick shields with their steam-driven armor, shocktroopers are more resilient than the other Man-O-War. For many years, shocktroopers were t he most durable of all Man-O-War variants, though in recent years that distinction has been usurped by the larger and more impressive tankers. Man-O-War tankers are still a developing technology, however, and are elded in far smaller numbers than the longestablished shocktroopers.
Tanker Tower Tower S hield
A suit of tanker armor looms over the standard Man-O-War, standing nearly on a level with heavy warjacks. The soldiers who pilot tankers are selected from those with stellar track records of prociency with traditional steam armor, as a tanker requires a much more deft hand to manage with any degree of success. Man-O-War tankers support their smaller companions in battle, protecting them with massive shields and laying down heavy supporting re.
MODELS 1 Kommander Zoktavir, the Butcher Unleashed Warcaster Unit PIP 33101 2 Rager Heavy Warjack PIP 33106 3 Ruin Heavy Warjack PIP 33108 4 Kommandant Atanas Arconovich & Standard Man-O-War Unit PIP 33128 5 Man-O-War Bombardiers Unit PIP 33067
KOMMANDANT SORSCHA KRATIKOFF Sorscha Kratikoff has dedicated her life to Khador, tearing through its enemies with the power and fury of a crimson gale. Her twenty-y twenty-year ear service record documents the rise of a legendary patriot, transcending military branches branches to inspire all who serve the glory of the Empire. Having risen to the rank of kommandant at an unprecedentedly young age, Sorscha has been tasked with sharing command of the full might of Khador’s new ManO-War division. She now leads the most mechanikally advanced force the Motherland has ever unleashed upon its rivals.
Frostfang, retrofitted for steam armor use
Sorscha’s position is well-earned, yet intrigue played its part in her new commission as well. Rumors of an affair with Great Prince Vladimir Tzepesci have circled the pair for years. After Vlad’s engagement to Empress Ayn Vanar, some believe her imperial majesty honored Kratikoff with this position as a way to utilize one of her kingdom’s greatest military assets while also distancing her betrothed from potential scandal. Sorscha, for her part, has always known duty
Regulation XK427 "Ear Warmer" cap
and station would keep her and the great prince apart. She has resolved to focus on unifying the Man-O-War into a coherent division and leveraging its strength to destroy the enemies of the Motherland.
Sorscha began her new assignment with several months of rigorous training to master Man-OWar armor. armor. She wears a unique hybrid of warcaster and Man-O-War armor custom-built to fit her smaller frame and to channel her arcane power. While it is relatively compact by Man-OWar standards, it is still much larger and more cumbersome than the warcaster armor she was accustomed to. Only after weeks of ceaseless drilling and tireless practice did she become fully proficient in her new armor. She proved her readiness by challenging the most skilled Man-O-War of her division to a series of trials. She managed to keep pace with the veterans in one challenge after the next until she had earned the respect of her subordinates. Only then was she fully welcomed as one of them.
3-inch, 6-caliber cannon, retractable
Warcaster/Man-O-War hybrid armor
In combat, Kommandant Sorscha fights with the power of an avalanche avalan che and the swiftness of a storm. Using her heavier armor combined with her power field to endure barrages of enemy fire, she smashes headlong into her enemies. With her command of winter magic, she conceals the movements of troops under her command, allowing flanking and ambush maneuvers unprecedented among these steam-powered soldiers. While her soldiers outmaneuver and overwhelm the enemy, enemy, Sorscha hurls herself into the thick of the fighting, laying waste to warrior, beast, and machine alike with sweeps of her great hammerscythe Frostfang and shots from her heavy cannon. Kept in near-constant deployment for over a year, Sorscha Kratikoff has been reborn in steel; her armor’s mechanikal limbs and the Man-O-War soldiers under her command both act as extensions of her battlefield prowess, amplifying her ability to bring ruin to the enemies of Khador. In brief moments of respite, Sorscha catches herself dreaming of another life, one which is now denied to her. Rather than despair, however, Sorscha chooses to bear the agony of loss like another set of armor and to drive forward once again into her foes.
HEROES OF THE MAN -O-W -O-WAR AR
KOMMANDANT ATANAS ARCONOVICH Some military leaders arrive in their position by choice or via some oddly circuitous route. But others seem destined to this life, as if nothing else would have suited them, and Atanas Arconovich is one of these. When the High Kommand began to discuss the possibility of creating the Armored Corps as a fully self-sufficient self-sufficient Man-O-War army, Arconovich Arconovich was the first officer on every supreme kommandant’s list.
A decorated officer of the 2nd Army, Army, Arconovich participated in the capture of Northguard and the subsequent occupation of the Thornwood Forest in 608–609 AR. When Cygnar retaliated following the civil war of late 609, Arconovich was one of the few officers who resolutely held his position against the southerners, refusing to give ground. His kommand continued fighting
Khardic cavalry sabre & hand cannon scaled for Man-O-War armor
until the truce between Cygnar and Khador, when he was forced to abandon the forest. In recognition of his bravery, Arconovich received the Star of the Motherland. In the interwar period, he was promoted to the rank of kommandant and given a special assignment to assist in restructuring certain elements of the Man-O-War corps into a dedicated division. Arconovich trained alongside a new batch of recruits as they went through the rigorous Man-O-War training regimen, learning how to operate the steam armor as well as how best to command a force of Man-O-War. Just as this training came to an end and he had set himself to the task of commanding his new force, Cygnar attacked in Khador. The kommandant’s new division was to receive its first true test in the crucible of war.
Modified Kommandant Cap KZX007 in gold Trusty bannerman with gladius (for stabbing)
Arconovich abides by the principle that a true kommandant must lead his soldiers from the front to provide an example of patriotism and bravery and to inspire them to great deeds. He believes an effective order must be simple, direct, and concise, because a soldier cannot be blamed for his superior’s inability to efficiently convey his demands. In all of these attitudes, Arconovich found his priorities mirrored by the similarly recently promoted Sorscha Kratikoff, with whom he shares leadership responsibilities. They have together taken the already impressive soldiers of the Armored Corps to new heights. Arconovich expects the Man-O-War Man-O-War of his division to be able to assess battlefiel battlefield d conditions and respond according to their training and the tactical doctrine of the corps without waiting for orders from their superiors. He is quick to reward excellence but uncompromising in dealing with those who have shirked their duty. Like most individuals in the upper ranks—with the exception of commoners like Kratikoff—Arconovich Kratikoff—Arconovich was born into wealth and title, his being one of the minor noble families of southern Khador. He retains some attitudes from this upbringing, including a general disdain for the lowborn, which he has fought to suppress. He believes in the duty of the nobility, nobility, for without a proper example to emulate, the
THEME FORCE HEROES OF THE MAN -O-W -O-WAR AR
SERGEANT DRAGO DR AGOS S DRAG DR AGADOVIC ADOVICH H In another life, Dragos Dragadovich may have been one of the foremost manhunters to emerge from the forests of Skirov, or perhaps a barbarian warlord with thousands of warriors sworn to him, but his destiny took him down another path. Born in a modest trapping village at the fringe of the Empire, he spent his youth stalking the wilds and defending his family’s homestead from wild beasts and feral men from the unciviliz uncivilized ed world.
When he reached the age of conscription, Dragos had never even seen a city.. He was enrolled as a member of the Winter Guard sight-unseen, never city having bothered to try to avoid it, unlike some of his kinsmen who wound up serving as irregulars. When he arrived for training, his instructors took note of the man’s impressive physique and immediately transferred transferred him to the Man-O-War program.
Improperly repaired and maintained armor From the outset, Dragos excelled at the p hysical requirements, requirements, but he found the military discipline and regimented lifestyle less to his liking. While he enjoyed the sense of indestructibility he felt in armor, he found obedience to others a more difficult hurdle. He prickled at even the thought of being controlled. In particular, particular,
his tendency toward insubordination and violent outbursts gave him a certain reputation, one which prevented him from swift advancemen advancementt in the corps.
He might have been removed from training if his instructors had not seen fit to channel his destructive energies into a more productive outlet: the Demolition Corps. Dragos was transferre transferred d there following a series of fights with fellow trainees, and he flourished in his new role. He enjoyed nothing more than seeing structures come crashing down from a blow of his hammer. hammer. Dragadovich rose to prominence after participating in the assault on Deepwood Tower, where he destroyed several blockhouses at the outer perimeter of the fortress. Other members of his unit succumbed to concentrated fire from the Cygnarans, but he was relentless, taking up his fallen sergeant’s maul and tearing through the enemy with the fury of a winter storm. Following this accomplishment, Dragadovich was promoted to sergeant. Unlike others of his rank, however, he does not command a dedicated unit of Man-O-War. Instead, he is given special assignments, traveling between kommands as the needs of the ongoing war effort demand.
Timber wolf pelt, non-regulation
Failure to submit exemption form for second ice maul
Bear teeth, non-regulation
HALLS OF HONOR Since the formation of the Man-O-War division, some individuals have risen to prominence and become legends for their accomplishments. Stories of their exploits are shared among all Man-O-War, who view them as examples of what each soldier should aspire to be.
KOVNIK ROCH LAVOUNOV
SERGEANT VIKTORIA YAJOVLEV
Kovnik Roch Lavounov was one of the early heroes of the ManO-War. O-War. A founding member of the shocktroopers, shocktr oopers, Lavounov fought in the First Thornwood War. During the nal Battle of the Tongue, he defended the fallen body of King Ruslan Vygor to prevent the southerners from claiming it as a prize. Lavounov kept waves of Cygnarans at bay until the king’s body could be recovered and returned for buria l. For his actions, he was awarded the Shield of Khardovic Khar dovic in the wi nter of 511 511 AR. He remains one of the most fondly remembered of soldiers by all members of the Assault Corps.
Without the courage and ski ll of Sergeant Sergea nt Yajovlev Yajovlev,, the steam armor of the Man-O-War would not have have reached the level of technical sophistication necessary to produce modern tankers. The sergeant was one of the foremost test pilots of steam armor, enduring all manner of mechanikal failures and painful injuries on behalf of her fellow soldiers. Over the course of her career, she lost one leg when an out-of-control suit pulverized it, suered scalding burns to nearly half her body, and more than once nearly lost her life lif e in boiler boil er explosions. But Yajovlev Yajovlev persisted, becoming one of the rst Man-O-War to don a suit of tanker armor to test its mechanikal worthiness as well as assisting in renements to its design.
STAR OF THE MOTHERLAND
SHIELD OF KHARDOVIC
ANVIL OF CONQUEST
SABERS OF SERVICE
PRIVAT SEVASTJAN BORISOV
K APITAN MOVUS MOVUS DOBROMITCH
In the early days, a suit of steam armor could be as dangerous to the soldier wearing it as to those they faced, sometimes fatally so. Sevastjan Borisov was one such unfortunate soldier. In his rst-generation r st-generation Man-O-War Man-O-War armor, Borisov part icipated in the Battle of Formor Pass, when elements of the Coin War spilled over into i nto Khador near Volni Volningrad. ngrad. The Ordic-backed mercenaries were well-equipped, and Borisov’s kompany was outnumbered, but the Man-O-War held their position. During this conict, Borisov’s armor began to fail, venting steam slowly at rst and then at an increasing rate, cooking the privat alive. Still Borisov kept on ghting, giving in to death only after the mercenaries were repelled. His armor was left at Formor Pass as a monument, while his blistered body was returned to be displayed at Rigevnya complex, along with his nal words to the engineers: “Do better.” Borisov’s preserved body is still displayed in a sealed glass con as a reminder to those who fabricate
A towering Umbrean from the grasslands of southeastern Khador, Kapitan Kapitan Movus Dobromitch is remembered as one of the greatest drakhun ever to ride into war. His experience and insights helped to rene the tactics and techniques of combining Man-O-War armor and heavy cavalry. Dobromitch served in active duty for over twenty years before suering a debilitating injury in a clash with Ordic mercenaries along the southern border. Not Not willi ng to fully reti re, he went on on to train new generations of mounted Man-O-War until his death in 575 AR. His saddle is still on display at the Man-O-War stable in Korsk in honor of his invaluable contributions.
KOMPANIES OMPANIES OF RENOWN R ENOWN In the relatively short period of their existence, Man-O-War have bravely fought in every major Khadoran engagement. Kompanies Kompanies of steam-armored soldiers s oldiers have accomplished accomplished feats of heroism that resonate not only among the Man-O-War but with every true patriot living in Khador.
The Man-O-War of the 7th have fought with distinction for decades, participating in such events as the demolition of Deepwood Tower and the subsequent occupation of the Thornwood Forest in 608 AR. A m ixed kompany of Man-O-War, the 7th now operates as the vanguard of Kommandant Sorscha Kratiko’s division. Often, the kommandant takes control of the kompany herself, and her presence inspires the soldiers of the Red Line to feats of heroism on t he battleeld.
The 16th “Hull Grinders” is a kompany of seasoned veterans, its members among the oldest and most experienced Man-OWar in Khador. This kompany has more soldiers with Sabers of Service medals than any other. The steam armor these venerable shocktroopers wear more than compensates for their aging bodies, and the decades of battleeld experience each member has makes them formidable opponents in battle.
As the “honor guard” of Man- O-War O-War Kovnik Czarn iev Agrobov, Agrobov, the 21st has seen action in Llael, Ord, Rhul, and along the fringes of the Thornwood. The soldiers of the 21st are all veterans and have served Kovnik Agrobov for nearly six years. They possess legendary grit and resolve, having braved every sort of danger western Immoren could throw at them. This was the former unit of Simonyev Blaustavya, and the soldiers of the 21st often eld new prototypes well in advance of all other Man-O-W Man-O -War, ar, including the rst suits of tanker armor to
The 43rd is among the most decorated kompanies to ght along Khador’s shared border with Ord. Formed in t he early days of the Man-O-War, the 43rd was one of the rst to receive training and armament as a dedicated demolition kompany. During the Battle of Summer’s End in 595 AR, teams of Demolition Corps reached the outer defenses of Scarswall and brought down many artil lery towers vital to the defense of the fortress.
Man-O-War soldiers are seldom considered skilled forest ghters, but the men and women of the 66th challenge that perception. Even with their heavy and cumbersome armor, they excel at warfare among the trees and hills. Bombardiers in the kompany are especially renowned for their diligence in blazing trails for their fellow soldiers with their buzzing chain blades. They have earned a reputation for cleaving paths through the thickest forests of western Immoren to bring ruination to the enemies of the Motherland.
The soldiers of the 101st 101st take great pride in their role as the heavy guard of Stasikov Palace. Membership is a privilege aorded to few Man-O-War, oered only to those who have received the Shield of Khardovic for valor in battle. The 101st has the distinction of serving as Empress Ayn Vanar’s honor honor guard gua rd when the empress travels abroad.
PAINTING THE AR A R MORED CORPS SWATCH KEY B: BASE S: SHADE
IVORY GUARD B: MORROW WHITE + TROLLBLOOD HIGHLIGHT S: GREATCOAT GREY H: MORROW WHITE
HULL GRINDERS B: BLOODSTONE S: UMBRAL UMBER H: RUCKSACK TAN
KOMPANIES KOMPANIES OF RENOWN R ENOWN RED LINE
RED: KHADOR RED BASE
BLACK: THAMAR BLACK
TRIM: RHULIC GOLD + BROWN INK
STEEL: COLD STEEL
STEEL: PIG IRON
ARMOR: IRONHULL GREY
ARMOR: HAMMERFALL KHAKI
BLACK: THAMAR BLACK
TRIM: TRAITOR GREEN
STEEL: PIG IRON
STEEL: PIG IRON
BRASS: BLIGHTED GOLD
BRASS: BRASS BALLS
WIDOW BEARS ARMOR: GUN CORPS BROWN ARMOR SHADE: UMBRAL UMBER STEEL 1: COLD STEEL STEEL 2: PIG IRON
IVORY GUARD ARMOR: MORROW WHITE + TROLLBLOOD HIGHLIGHT RED: KHADOR RED BASE STEEL: PIG IRON BRASS: MOLTEN BRONZE BRONZE + BROWN INK
EFFECTS FROM THE MOTHERLAND
WEAPONS & EQUIP EQUIPMENT MENT
legs, shoulder assembly, and cowling provide enough room to allow the soldier inside. Beneath the outer plating of t he armor, a steel skeleton provides rei nforcement and allows Man-O-War armor to stand freely when unpowered. Without an operator wearing it, the joints of the armor lock i nto place, place, allowing it to be transported or worked on more more easily tha n if it were to become slack. slac k.
Thanks to the streng th imparted by the ar mor they wear, wear, ManO-War O-War wield t he largest a nd most devastating armaments of any standard infantry i n the Iron Kingdoms. Their weapons weapons would be impossible for a human to wield without augmented strength and are bu ilt on a scale otherwise s een only among ogrun and light warjacks. This, combined with thei r durability, In order to use the armor, the operator must wear a full leather makes a Man-O-War kompany more than a match for the bodysuit with mechani kal connectors at key positions along infantry of other nations. the joints. These connectors interlock with triggers in the mechanikal frame within the armor. As the operator moves, these triggers receive the input and cause steam-powered pistons to adjust accordingly. A series of ne controls set into Created to enable mere humans to go toe-to-toe with warjacks the gauntlets are used to make adjustments on the y, such as on the battleeld, steam-powered Man-O-War armor imbues dampening the rebox to conserve coal while outside of combat. its wearer with incredible strength, durability, and protection. The sophisticated mechanisms that allow the armor to function There are drawbacks to wearing heavy battle armor powered are susceptible to wear, and sucient impacts can cause them by a steam boiler, however however.. Those who wear wear these rigs are ar e to become damaged or unseated. It is all but impossible for a susceptible to heat stroke, exhaustion, and the occasional steam soldier to aect repairs while wearing the armor—a source of leak that can cook them alive in minutes. A soldier must be great distress to some rst-time operators. extensively trained in the use of the armor merely to walk in it, Man-O-War sometimes refer to the outer layer of armor as the let alone to control the added strength it grants. grob , vulgar slang slang usually translated translated as “the con.” con.” Once locked Donning a suit of Man-O-War Man-O-War armor presents more di culties inside the armor, new or less experienced soldiers often succumb than suiti ng up in a traditional full-plated suit of armor. Manto a gradually increasing claustrophobia, which is only made O-War O-War armor u nfolds in l ayers. When open, the chest plate, worse if the armor loses power and becomes dead weight rather than amplifying every twitch, extension, and exion exion through mechanikal motivators. motivators.
ARMOR AR MOR & BATT BATTLE LE DRESS
Each suit of Man-O-War is comprised of multiple layers, including an inner harness chassis frame threaded with insulated steam piping onto which an external layer of thick armor pieces are attached. The engine assembly is afﬁxed to the back of the inner chassis with layers of heavy insulating materials between soldier and engine.
Tanker Steam Armor Man-O-War tanker armor is extra-thick steam armor developed to support the weight of heavy artillery weapons. Signicantly larger than standard Man-O-War armor, armor, tanker armor utilizes an adapted Kolstok-class steam engine to provide adequate power. While the basic design of tanker steam armor is similar to that of the standard Man-O-War, the pilot must master a far more complex system to operate it. With in this t his complexity, however, however, tanker pilots have discovered opportunity: by carefully diverting the ow of steam among the armor’s many systems, a skilled pilot can truly optimize the rig’s eectiveness. In the midst of battle, a tanker can be seen barreling headlong through thickets of pikemen, bulldozing buildings, or cracking open the hull of a heavy warjack with the swipe of its tower shield.
Demolition Corps Ice Maul
PERSONAL EQUIPMENT Man-O-War armor oers little opportunity for personal equipment. While su ited up, Man-O-War do not even carry their own mess kits, rations, or water. Such supplies are relegated to the support crews, who also assist the Man-OWar in donning and dong their armor, as well as seeing to its maintenance and fueling. The more pious soldiers may wear tokens of favored ascendants or Menoxes, but even these are discouraged, as even a thin chain or small religious trinket can become caught in the mechanisms of the armor and cause mechanical fouling or even physical harm. When not in their armor, members of the ManO-War O-War corps l ive much as other soldiers do. They are issued standard uniforms to wear during transit and during their down time. This attire resembles the standard Winter Guard uniform, albeit with insign ia that designates them as ManO-War soldiers. Most Man-O-War see this uniform as casual wear, akin to other soldiers’ civilian clothes. In their minds, steam armor is the only true uniform of the corps.
ANNIHILAT ANNIHIL ATOR OR BLADE BL ADE The primary weapon of the shocktroopers is the annihilator blade, a steel and brass halberd balanced for one-handed use. The two-foot-long cutting edge has a steep, chisel-like grind, and the blade’s overall thickness is over three inches, giving it sucient strength and weight to cleave through armor plating. The head has a penetrating spike, or thorn, on the obverse side to punch through thicker armor or to pull aside an opponent’s shield, as well as a short spike for thrusting attacks. The twelve-foot haft has a knurled brass sleeve to enhance the grip, with a heavy conical counterbalance at the butt end.
Man-O-War Axe Cannon
FROST FROST AXE A XE Carried by shocktrooper ocers, the frost axe is a mechanikal annihilator blade containing runeplates that imbue the weapon with freezing cold. The axe radiates this chill several inches beyond the cutting edge and transfers it to the target just before and during impact. At such low temperatures, esh ashfreezes and metal brittles, greatly amplifying the damage of the weapon’s weapon’s stri kes. Few soldiers damaged by a f rost axe survive, sur vive, as the additional trauma it causes is beyond the ability of most medics to treat.
ASSAULT ASSAULT CORPS SHIELD CANNON Designed by Simonyev Blaustavya in an eort to provide additional protection and versatility to the Man-O-War, the shield cannon is somewhat inaccurate but provides a powerful initial strike when the Man-O-War is about to go toe to toe with more heavily armored opponents. Similar to a slug gun, the cannon res a solid conical projectile designed to punch t hrough armor. armor. The round is grooved to provide stability in ight, but the short barrel of the cannon limits its eective eective range. range. The weapon’s weapon’s recoil i s so great t hat it cannot be r ed by a regular soldier, and even shocktroopers must prepare for a shot by diverting additional steam to their armor’s ring arm to compensate for it. The shield cannon only has room for a single shot and must be reloaded between ring, a matter generally handled by support mechaniks. As these soldiers seek to close to melee as quickly as possible, there is rarely opportunity for multiple shots in any case.
BOMBARDIER GRENADE CANNON & CHAIN BLADE The primary weapon of the Man-O-War bombardiers, the grenade cannon is an indirect re, Man-O-War-portable light artillery cannon. It res an 80-millimeter self-propelled explosive charge with a fragmenting iron casing designed to devastate lightly armored targets. Bombardiers are trained to arc their shots over barricades, past friendly soldiers, and into trenches. Grenade cannons are tted with a steam-driven chain blade for close combat, combat, which can also be used to clear thick underbrush when the bombardiers must cut a path through the wilderness. By varying the speed at which the chain blade rotates, the operator can cut eectively through wood, brush, ice, and esh.
DEMOLITION CORPS ICE MAUL The ice maul is a mechanikal weapon that ash-freezes any surface on contact, causing the target to shatter from the force of the blow. Carried by the Khadoran K hadoran Demolition Corps, ice mauls are powered by an arcanodynamic accumulator housed in the weapon’s head, which weighs in excess of forty pounds. The haft is knurled steel and approximately three inches in diameter, bringing the overall weight to well over a hundred pounds. A blow from this hammer would be adequate to shatter any living opponent, but its primary application is the destruction of fortications and warjacks.
MAN-O-W MA N-O-WAR AR AXE A XE CANNON A weapon produced in limited quantity and most commonly used by ocers ranked kovnik or higher, this heavy cannon is set with a stout axe blade perpendicular to the barrel. The weapon is reinforced to allow its use as a ferocious melee weapon without fouling the trueness of the shot. A kovnik axe cannon packs an impressive amount of repower in a compact package and is intended to be paired with an assault shield. Designed after the fashion of Khardic axes, the weapon’s haft is eectively a stout, ried cannon that res a .72 caliber slug with surprising accuracy.
Siege Tanker Tanker Slug Cannon
SLUG CANNON Equipped exclusively on the Man-O-War strike tanker, the slug cannon is a shoulder-mounted, high-caliber, armor-piercing cannon fed by a ve-chambered rotary cylinder. The cylinder cycles with each shot red, placing a loaded chamber at the ready while the expended cylinder reloads automatically from an ammunition hopper axed to the weapon. The slug cannon harnesses steam from the strike tanker’s boiler in dual pressure chambers. By diverting additional steam to the cannon, the tanker can build up to a devastating shot. At full power, a slug cannon can breach bunker walls and other fortications with ease, and its shot is similarly eective against mobile hard targets like battle engines and colossals.
VOLLEY GUN The volley gun is a multiple-barreled light cannon found only on Man-O-War suppression tankers. The cartridge red by a volley gun is equivalent to a high-velocity rie round, slightly heavier than that used by Winter Guard rie corps. Able to re single barrels in rapid succession or multiple barrels simultaneously, the volley gun’s high-velocity and high-density barrage is ideal for providing covering re or for engaging engaging lightly armored and unarmored infantry. A cam in the weapon allows for switchi ng between re modes. The weapon’s weapon’s feed
in combat; however, this ammunition drum cannot easily be replaced in the eld. Suppression tankers wield paired volley guns to compensate for this limited ammunition, but in the heat of battle many tankers choose to unleash a storm of lead into concentrations of the enemy rather than conserve their supplies.
MAN-O-WAR CHARIOTS The two types of Man-O-War chariots bring a much needed element of highly mobile artillery to the Armored Corps, and they repres ent a renement of both old and newer tec hnology. Horse-drawn artillery has been utilized by armies in western Immoren since the invention of the cannon, though its limited usefulness and relative vulnerability saw it quickly eclipsed by warjacks. Heavy barding originally developed for the drakhun steeds protects the powerful warhorses pulling the chariots from incidental re, while the gunner is similarly protected in full Man-O-War armor. The siege chariot is equipped with an exceptionally powerful but short-ranged direct-shot breaching cannon, its slug capable of smashing through fortress walls as well as heavy warjack armor. The assault chariot has a rapid-ring barrage gun, a multi-barreled cannon loaded with explosive shells capable of shredding through even heavy infantry armor. Both chariots are equipped with rear-mounted bracing arms that are lowered to the earth to help absorb the substantial recoil of these weapons.
COMPANY COMPANY OF IRON
REQUISITION COSTS This table gives the requisition costs of the new Khador models useable in Company of Iron games. The requisition cost of weapon attachments is not cumulative; use the cost listed regardless of the number of weapon attachments added to a unit. Tables for all Factions are updated as new models are released and can be b e found at privateerpress.com/ pr ivateerpress.com/rules. rules. Model count adjustment: If your opponent starts the game
with at least twice as many models in their army as you have, increase your hand size by one. If your opponent has at least three times as many models, increase your hand size by two.
Will "Oz" Schoonover's Arconovich's Honor Guard keeps the kommandant safe and in good repair as he surveys the battleﬁeld.
STATE OF WAR: ARMORED AR MORED CORPS
Repair Bay During prolonged engagements, battle mechaniks assigned to Man-O-War kompanies erect eld repair bays to eect more extensive repairs. These facilities are outtted with armor plates, boilers, and other spare parts to keep the corp s in ghting form.
The Man-O-War Division is the armored st of Khadoran military might. En masse, these steam-powered soldiers and their heavy warjacks can deal a crippling blow to any enemy of Rules: A Repair Bay terrain feature is an obstruction represented the Empire, trampling the dead into the mud beneath their steel- by a 120 mm base. A player player can control the Repair Bay by having shod feet. Few opponents can bring to bear sucient repower to any model with the Repair special action rule B2B with it while threaten the heavily armored Man-O-War, and they are typically no enemy models are within 1 of it. During their Control Phase, deployed where the ghting is thickest and the danger to more a player controlling the Repair Bay can return d3 small-based vulnerable kompanies is greatest. warrior models or one medium-based warrior model to a friendly unit within 6 . Additionally, while the Repair Bay is under a The terrain features described below provide thematic options player’s player’s control, friendly fr iendly warjacks B2B with it can r emove d3 + 3 to use in any narrative game of WARMACHINE and HORDES. damage during the player’s Control Phase. You will want to discuss with your opponent how many pieces of thematic terrain you wish to use. ˝
BATTLEFIELD CONDITION: SMOG & STEAM The belching furnaces of steam-powered armor, warjacks, and other machines
Skilled tacticians seek out defensible positions with clear line of sight where they can erect defensive obstacles. These positions allow soldiers to control whole regions of the battleeld and are often used to protect vital assets like artillery.
of war are found on battlefields across western Immoren. Great gatherings of such machines can blanket the battlescape with a thick haze of coal smoke and
Rules: A Tactical Tactical Ground terrai n feature is represented re presented by a 3 , 4 ,
vented steam, which creates confusion, reduces visibility, and can be cleared only by strong prevailing winds.
or 5 template. While a model is completely within the template, it has cover and is con sidered to be elevated 1 .
Rules: Smog & Steam is a battlefield condition rather condition rather than a terrain feature. While this battlefield condition is in effect, all models have concealment. At the end of each round, there is a chance the wind will pick up and carry away the haze and murk. At the start of each round after the first, roll a d6. On a roll of 6, remove this battlefield battlefield condition from the game.
Resupply Cache While deployed, armies must rely on caches of ammunit ion, coal, and other supplies to remain eective. These caches are often watched by eagle-eyed supply sergeants, as clumsy handling of the materiel can lead to violent detonations. Rules: A Resupply Cache terrain feature is an obstacle t hat can be
represented by various things, such as a pile of barrels, a mound of powder sacks, a wall template, or a 50 m m base. While a model is within 1 of a Resupply Cache, its ra nged attacks gai n +2 RNG. Warrior models starting an advance as part of their normal movement within 1 of this feature gain +2 SPD. If a model is disabled while within 1 of the Resupply Cache, roll a d6. On a roll of 6, the model fumbles while handling the powder or fuel, and it explodes! Center a 3 AOE on the model. Models Models within with in the AOE suer a POW 10 re damage roll. ˝
ARMORED AR MORED CORPS SCENARIO Across the modern history of warfare, the Man-O-War have faced nearly every foe conceivable in the name of Khadoran preeminence. From the early battles of the Thornwood Forest to the modern conict raging across Llael, Man-O-War have had ample opportunities to exemplify the Khadoran ghting spirit and the durability of its military hardware. Man-O-War do not participate in petty skirmishes. The High Kommand reserves them for battles of utmost import, as each soldier represents many months of specialized training and countless koltina in advanced technology. They ght to capture key cities, repel overwhelming enemy numbers, and bring down fortress walls with their mighty ice mauls. To be counted among the Man-O-War is a privilege reserved for but a few, and every one among them strives to live up to the legends of the heroes of Khador who have fought, and prevailed, before them.
On the following page is a special narrative scenario that allows players to experience the full might of the Armored Corps and march into battle as an unbreakable red tide of steel.
ARMORED CORPS SCENARIO
by Will Pagani
Khador Theme Force
ARMORED CORPS With a hiss of steam and the tread of iron, the heavily armored infantry of Khador march to war with heavy warjacks at their side. Though Khador lacks the light warjacks of other nations, they make up for it with a dedicated corps of soldiers who go to war in steam-powered armor. Few opponents possess the weaponry able to chew through so thick a wall of armor, allowing the Man-O-War to crush enemy emplacements.
ARMY AR MY COMPOSITION An army made using this theme force can include only the following Khador models: • Khador warcasters
• Battle Mechanik units
• Non-character warjacks
• War Dog solos
• Man-O-War models/units
SPECIAL RULES • This army can also also include one Mercenary Mercenary solo and one Mercenary Mercenary unit that will work work for Khador. Khador. These models can be included even if they have the Partisan [Khador] special rule. Mercenary units in this army can include attachments. • For every full 20 points of Man-O-War and Mechanik models/units in this army, army, you can add one Khador command attachment, Tanker solo, or medium-based Man-O-War solo to the army free of cost. Free models do not count toward the total point value of Man-O-War Man-O-War and Mechanik models/units in the army when calculating this bonus. • When a model model in this army is aected aected by the Repair special special rule, remove one one additional damage point. • For each Khador unit in this army, army, one Man-O-War model/unit model/uni t in this army can gain Advance Move. (Before the start of the game but after both players have deployed, a model with Advance Move can make a full advance.)