Your Curse Lists – Plus the March Listbuilding Challenge

I think there are rock stars within every subgenre, and for people who are obsessed with musical theater Sutton Foster and Audra MacDonald are like Beyonce to them. I’m sure the a cappella world has their own version of that, and that exists in every geeky subculture.

~ Anna Kendrick

BAM! Turns out you guys really like smashing out mortal wounds by the dozen. I guess nobody likes getting smashed by them, but that’s their problem, right? We’re here today to do the smashing! Or the “failing to roll a 4+ and then blaming dice for our myriad failures”; that works too.

This month, we’ve been building lists themed around Curse:

Credit: Games Workshop via Wahapedia

I got a huge response to this one, so thanks to everyone who got involved. I will again restrict it to 3 published lists* to keep things snappy, but this month was the hardest one yet to whittle down, and I had to leave out some very cool armies.

And before we smash into it, one general bit of tech for anyone planning on playing a Curse list: don’t sleep on Redeploy. When Unit A moves within 9″ of your Priest, that can trigger a Redeploy to move that Priest up within 9″ of Unit B, ready to target Unit B with Curse in your next hero phase.

Ready? Let’s go!

List of the Month: Slaves to Darkness, by Darren Watson

Credit: Games Workshop

When Anna Kendrick said that every geeky subculture has its own superstars, she cleverly hid it behind some musical theatre references, but I’m pretty sure she was really thinking of Darren. He’s the literal world champion of Age of Sigmar, he can write, he can talk, he cares for sick animals in his spare time and while I was writing this he’s probably saved a bunch of children from a burning orphanage and maybe cured cancer.

He’s Darren “Horsey” Watson, and he’s the best there is at what he does. Take it away, Darren!

Allegiance: Slaves to Darkness
– Damned Legion: Cabalists
– Grand Strategy: Dominating Presence
– Triumphs: Bloodthirsty

Leaders
Chaos Sorcerer Lord (135)*
 General
 Command Trait: Mighty Ritualist
 Artefact: Black Athame
 Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
 Spell: Mask of Darkness
Chaos Sorcerer Lord (135)*
 Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
 Spell: Mask of Darkness
Chaos Lord (120)*
 Reaperblade & Daemonbound Steel
 Artefact: Spelleater Pendant
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
Bloodsecrator (125)**
 Allies
Aspiring Deathbringer (85)**
 Bloodaxe and Wrath Hammer
 Allies
Darkoath Chieftain (85)**
 Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)
 Universal Spell Lore: Levitate

Battleline
30 x Chaos Marauders (270)***
 Axes & Shields
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
 Reinforced x 2
10 x Chaos Marauders (90)*
 Axes & Shields
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
10 x Chaos Marauders (90)*
 Axes & Shields
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne

Units
20 x Splintered Fang (150)***
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
 Reinforced x 1
20 x Splintered Fang (150)***
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
 Reinforced x 1
9 x Untamed Beasts (70)**
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
9 x Untamed Beasts (70)**
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
1 x Mindstealer Sphiranx (95)

Behemoths
Chaos Warshrine (215)
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
 Prayer1: Universal Prayer Scripture: Curse

Endless Spells & Invocations
Eightfold Doom-sigil (50)
Lauchon the Soulseeker (55)

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

Additional Enhancements
Artefact
Artefact

Total: 1990 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 4 / 4
Allies: 210 / 400
Wounds: 163
Drops: 15

How it works

There are a lot of combos here….a lot. For starters, we’ve got multiple ways to get +1 attack on your units:

  • Bloodsecrator banner
  • Aspiring Champion’s Command Ability
  • The Eightfold Doom-Sigil

But even aside from that, there are a number of good support options:

  • The sub-faction allows you to perform a ritual and cause d3 wounds to a unit 
  • Each wound caused gives your nearby wizards that many pluses to cast
  • So you can cast Sigil at the back, leave it up, and use it later to power up your units
  • This combo also adds to the reliability of teleporting with Mask of Darkness

Key targets for the Mask are teleporting a buffed up unit of Spider Dudes or Marauders, or even getting the Mind Cat into position to make something important fight last. You’ll more likely teleport your infantry though, using the Warshrine buff to make them reroll hits and wounds.

Our mighty Chaos Lord can make a unit fight twice, but can struggle to keep up with a teleported unit…So you make them a Wizard with the Spelleater Pendant artefact, and now you’ve got a personal taxi service with Lauchon!

Meanwhile the Darkoath Chieftan can make your units fight on death, so he’s a cheaper Chaos Lord in some regards and brings target saturation and redundancy to the list. Again he becomes a Wizard with the Arcane Tome so he can use Lauchon, though the aim will often be to make a unit Fly with Levitate if the Lord has not yet been killed.

The gameplan

  • If your key target is within Curse range, you power up the Marauders
  • If not, power up the Splinterfang, since they naturally do mortal wounds on unmodified 6s to hit

Pregame moves are still dynamite, so your Untamed Beasts will help to protect your key pieces before the game even begins.

Our Chaos Sorcerer Lord can always use its spell that reroll hits and wounds on another unit, so you have one Marauder unit attacking twice with full rerolls, followed by 20 Splinterfang going into a unit that’s been Mind Catted, all topped off with another 20 Splinterfang fighting on death when your opponent does get to choose who fights.

After that, it’s pretty much roll billions of dice, and have all the fun 🥳🥳🥳

Many skulls, many lols.

Cities of Sigmar, by Mark Paddon

Credit: Games Workshop

Mark is the power behind the excellent Jabber Tzeentch blog, and he’s cooked up a storm for us today. Check out his list, check out his site and if you see this army across the table – get ready to clench!

Allegiance: Cities of Sigmar
– City: Living City
– Grand Strategy: Pillars of Belief
– Triumphs: Bloodthirsty

Leaders
Runelord (100)**
 General
 Command Trait: High Priest
 Artefact: Deepmire Cloak
 Universal Prayer Scripture: Curse
Celestial Hurricanum with Celestial Battlemage (280)**
 Lore of Leaves: Lifesurge
Doralia ven Denst (115)
Warden King (100)**
 City Role: General’s Adjutant

Battleline
20 x Hammerers (290)*
 Reinforced x 1
20 x Hammerers (290)*
 Reinforced x 1
20 x Irondrakes (340)**
 Reinforced x 1

Units
4 x Dracothian Guard Fulminators (460)*
 Reinforced x 1

Core Battalions
*Hunters of the Heartlands
**Warlord

Total: 1975 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 4 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 110
Drops: 8

This list is ready for war, and good to go! We’re investing in the power of prayer and magic with the High Priest Command Trait to boost Curse, and the Arcane Tome enabling the Hurricanum to maximise its buffed casting. Thanks to Arcane Tome, the mortal wound wagon can crack out both warscroll spells each turn in addition to the Storm of Shemtek, to really get things firing.

Credit: Games Workshop via Wahapedia

The list can flex in a few directions, including:

  • Castling up with the Fulminators in reserve, as a boardwide threat
  • Alternatively, going aggro by dropping the Irondrakes in reserve to parachute in and shoot off a thing

Either way, the aim is to buff the Hammerers so they’re banging MWs on 6s to both hit and wound, with an extra attack as well. Once your opponent has dealt with the first unit, you have a second wave to crash in and bring the pain all over again.

Everyone is focusing on the Fulminators and Irondrakes, then BANG the Hammerers smash out about 20MW, in addition to normal damage!

Iterations

You could swap out Dora the Explorer for a second Runelord if you want, but she’s cool.

It’s also easy to make this list into a one drop by swapping out Dora for some Longbeards or similar, but one drops are for losers.

Extended Whinge of the Month: Blades of Khorne, by Patrick Nevan

Credit: Games Workshop

Measured Gaming’s own little ray of sunshine, Pat brings joy and positivity into our lives every day in the group chat. When he’s not moaning about Khorne, he’s carrying on about how easy life is for every other army in the game; but mostly he’s moaning about Khorne.

Sadly I don’t have a mute button for the guy so on the basis that a problem shared is a problem halved, I hereby inflict his existence on the rest of you. Khorne should be in a really good spot for Curse, given that they can reroll chanting rolls near their faction terrain, so get ready to embrace the joie de vivre that Pat brings to listbuilding and all aspects of life with this Khorne build.

Allegiance: Khorne
– Slaughterhost: None
– Grand Strategy: Pillars of Belief
– Triumphs: Indomitable

Leaders
Aspiring Deathbringer (85)*
 General
 Goreaxe and Skullhammer
 Command Trait: Slaughterborn
 Artefact: Mark of the Destroyer
Bloodsecrator (125)*
 Banner of Khorne (Artefact): Banner of Rage
Slaughterpriest (110)**
 Universal Prayer Scripture: Curse
 Prayer: Killing Frenzy
Slaughterpriest (110)**
 Universal Prayer Scripture: Curse
 Prayer: Blood Sacrifice
Bloodsecrator (125)*
Darkoath Chieftain (85)**
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne

Battleline
10 x Bloodreavers (80)
 Meatripper Axes
10 x Bloodreavers (80)
 Meatripper Axes
10 x Bloodreavers (80)
 Meatripper Axes

Units
5 x Wrathmongers (145)***
5 x Wrathmongers (145)*
5 x Wrathmongers (145)**
20 x Chaos Marauders (180)***
 Axes & Shields
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
 Reinforced x 1
20 x Chaos Marauders (180)***
 Axes & Shields
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
 Reinforced x 1
5 x Centigors (90)

Behemoths
Chaos Warshrine (215)
 Mark of Chaos: Khorne
 Prayer1: Prayer: Brazen Fury
 Prayer2: Universal Prayer Scripture: Curse

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

Additional Enhancements
Artefact
Prayer

Total: 1980 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 2 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 170
Drops: 16

With the Winter FAQ the mighty Blades of Khorne, conquerors of the Mortal Realms, finally bottomed out and became the worst faction in the game. What better way to mark the occasion than with a Curse list for the accursed army. This one may as well be called “At least we still throw a fuckload of dice”.

Ok so in an actual competitive tournament your fragile support heroes would be ruthlessly shot off the board, leaving the rest of your sad army to wrack up the Blood Tithes before your inevitable defeat, but let’s pretend we are playing AOS 1 or something.

You have three Priest options to deliver your Curse but the best trick is to send two Slaughter Priests forward to do your dirty work. The first guy hits the target with Bloodbind, dragging him forward into the range of the second guy who hits him with the Curse. The Warshrine prays for Reroll Hits and Wounds on one of the Marauder units, and everything else rushes forward for a Curse bukkake.

Best case scenario, your Marauders are at Plus 3 attacks rerolling hits, so 100 attacks should, back of the envelope, get you about 30 mortals. Everything else is throwing a crap ton of dice and rerolling ones to hit thanks to the Bloodsecrator’s Banner of Rage, because he can totally keep within 12 inches in theoretical land. Oh and everything will be wholly within 8 inches of Wrathmongers and none of your Prayers will fail or anything.

The Aspiring Deathbringer in this build, while continuing his fine tradition of being comically inept at fighting, throws a potential 16 attacks rerolling all hits, which should be about five or six mortals. If anyone can actually pull this off don’t bother telling me because I will never believe you.

The TLDR

It has Priests to chant the Curse, and everything throws a fuckload of dice.


Honourable Mentions

Darren was keen to point out that Simon Weakley grabbed a 4-1 with similar Slaves tech, so big credit to him for that, and shout out to Xander Bennett who submitted an absolute banger of an Idolators list that looked very, very competitive.

As always I’ve got my own contribution to the genre, this time coming from Ogor Mawtribes. They have a ready-to-wear Priest in the Huskard on Thundertusk, and there’s probably a list in that, but if you want something with a bit more oomph you can make the classic Frostlord on Stonehorn into a Priest by taking the right Command Trait:

Credit: Games Workshop via Wahapedia

Allegiance: Ogor Mawtribes
– Mawtribe: None
– Grand Strategy: Beast Master
– Triumphs: Indomitable

Leaders
Frostlord on Stonehorn (430)*
 General
 Command Trait: Touched by the Everwinter
 Artefact: Alvagr Rune-tokens
 Prayer: Curse
 Mount Trait: Black Clatterhorn

Hrothgorn (170)**

Battleline
2 x Mournfang Pack (160)*
 Gargant Hackers
Stonehorn Beastriders (320)**
 Weapon: Blood Vulture
Stonehorn Beastriders (320)**
 Weapon: Blood Vulture

Units
40 x Gnoblars (200)**
 Reinforced x 1
40 x Gnoblars (200)*
 Reinforced x 1
20 x Gnoblars (100)**
20 x Gnoblars (100)*
3 x Hrothgorn’s Mantrappers (0)*

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment
**Battle Regiment

Total: 2000 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 3 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 179
Drops: 2

Including shooting, Gnoblars have 3 (abysmal) attacks each, so that’s already a huge volume of dice looking for 6s. Bollgo can stride forward with confidence once you’ve activated Alvagr, right into heart of the enemy and well into Curse range. Black Clatterhorn on the big fella liberates you to use All Out Defence rather than All Out Attack, and puts you on a pretty spicy 2+ rerollable save.

The Gnoblars have a dual-purpose role of Curse chuckers and screens, protecting your big beasts from Alpha strikers and keeping them free to ABC: Always Be Charging.

Rounding out the package is Hrothgorn, who is a Battle Tactics machine with his ability to parachute in and auto-score Savage Spearhead (remember to keep your Mantrappers in the sky), and he also acts as a handy hero to issue CAs to your Beast Riders. This list is mobile, scores Battle Tactics well and is capable of ruthlessly focusing down key threats with brutal aggression.

KFC Challenge

We’ll have one of those each, thanks

I’ve been chatting Curse lists with Pat, and as you can probably tell, I generally rate them a bit higher than he does. It feels like the cost of getting Curse into these lists is low enough that you can still win games when it doesn’t go off, but it gives you an “out” and explosive upside in some tough games when it does.

The only one of these armies I’m anywhere close to owning is my own Ogors list, so we’ve had a little bet: if I can go at least 2-1 in the crucible of a Measured Gaming monthly event, it might not be S-Tier but it probably qualifies as a proper army and more than just a gimmick. So I’ll be taking this list to the April monthly with the aim of hitting that target – and just for fun, we’ve bet a KFC on it, loser buys the other one dinner. I’ll report back with the outcome – wish me luck!

March Listbuilding Challenge

Although I only play Destro, there are other armies that catch my eye from time to time, and I’ve always had a real soft spot for Kharadron Overlords. So my challenge to you for March is to write a list featuring:

  • Kharadron Overlords…
  • …and a strong melee component

Hang on, does that mean I…

Yes, you can include Gotrek. In fact that’s part of the appeal of this list structure: ranged damage that will whittle down your opponent, forcing them to step forward into the lion’s den.

I’ve deliberately left it wide open: you can show me KO lists with allied Gotrek, a custom KO army using their own melee tools, a mixed Duardin build in Barak Thryng or even Cities of Sigmar with meaningful KO representation. I’m pretty open-minded on what these lists looks like, but I love KO and I love fighting, so let’s get into it!


*Three plus my own list. I’m publishing that and you can’t stop me

Credit for the cover image to Games Workshop

https://ko-fi.com/plasticcraic

11 thoughts on “Your Curse Lists – Plus the March Listbuilding Challenge

  1. “Remember to keep your Mantrappers in the sky” – can you explain why this is important? If you’re dropping in Hrothgorn but don’t bring the gnoblars down then aren’t they just destroyed for nothing?

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    1. Hey mate, what I mean is that Savage Spearhead can only be scored by two units from your starting army. The free Frost Sabre is not part of your starting army – but the Gnoblars are – so you need to bring the Gnoblars on with Hrothgorn if you want to auto-score Savage Spearhead.

      What I probably should have said is *start* the Mantrappers in the sky, so they can deepstrike and score that Battle Tactic for you. Hope that makes more sense now!

      Like

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