Warmachine and Hordes Journeyman League Guide: Khador

Ah Khador, faction of the giant red tank-bots and Russianish Sovietish infantry. Khador has a very mean battlebox, possibly the best one out of the main factions and certainly very forgiving for a new player. We’re going to meander down two main theme progressions here again, as we have done with the previous articles. This time, we will go towards Jaws of the Wolf with Karchev the Terrible in one lane, and in the other we will try out Vlad 2 in Armored Corps. 

Here again is the progression of the Journeyman League, remember that you must keep the same models in your list from the week before

Week 1: Zero points total, you must use your factions battlebox or equivalent. No themes allowed.
Week 2: 15 points, battlegroup models only, no themes. 
Week 3: 30 points, battlegroup, units, and solos allowed, theme forces allowed. 
Week 4: 45 points, battlegroup, units, and solos allowed, theme forces allowed. Caster Swap (optional)
Week 5: 60 points, battlegroup, units, solos, and battle engines allowed. Theme forces allowed. 
Week 5: 75 points, battlegroup, units, solos, and battle engines allowed. Theme forces allowed. 



Week One:

The Khador battlebox is comprised of Lord Kozlov, a Juggernaut, and a Decimator. While you do not get any lights (Khador has none after all, at least outside of an attached character), this box has plenty of play into all of the other boxes. Khador is a faction that really rewards good fundamentals of positioning and timing. They are also the most forgiving faction as they can often just out-stats other lists. 

I like to see Tactical Supremacy on the Decimator in these games. Being able to shoot twice and then move away from enemy models is huge. I cannot think of a heavy at the battlebox level that threatens 13 inches in melee, and guns are not enough to bring down a Khador heavy. Additionally, since Chosen Ground gives out pathfinder, you can reposition behind walls or into rubble to get cover. 


Speaking of Chosen Ground, it goes on Kozlov and it stays on Kozlov. Being immune to Knock Down and giving everything pathfinder is very strong. 

Fury typically goes on the Juggernaut but it can also be very strong on the Decimator since the Rip Saw has Sustained Attack and can make high DEF things like Warpwolves or Cryx jacks absolutely melt. 

Kozlov is going to be very focus starved if you have all three upkeeps out. Typical turns see me allocating two to the Decimator and camping one with Kozlov in a safe place. On your feat turn, it doesn’t matter so much if you kill what you get your hands on as it does to just get in their face and mess them up a little bit. ARM 22 warjacks tend to survive pretty well at the battlebox level. 

Kozlov
- Decimator
- Juggernaut

Week Two:

We are already thinking about the branches of our theme forces, and at this point I am going to suggest diverging already. Jaws of the Wolf rewards masses of Warjacks, but Armored Corps does not, and we want as many points for Man O’ War as physically possible. 

Jaws of the Wolf:

I really like Kodiaks, and I really like Kodiaks even more with Fury or Unyielding. They run farther than the other Khador warjacks do, Chain Attack: Grab and Smash will get you familiar with power attacks and is a fantastic ability, and Vent Steam continues to amaze me every time I play with or against it.

Native Pathfinder will be big after Chosen Ground goes away too.

Kozlov
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Kodiak

Armored Corps:

We’re going to add the humble Marauder to our list at this point. He is cheap, durable, and hits plenty hard with Fury. Typically I will start Fury on him first now and use him to initiate piece trades while the Juggernaut and Decimator (and Kozlov for that matter) wait behind to mess things up. This leaves us four points down, but that is deliberate so that we can add more Man O’ War next week!

Kozlov
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Marauder

Week Three:

We finally get to play with theme bonuses! Jaws of the Wolf is going to get some free stuff because the entire list qualifies for free points. Armored Corps will not yet, but it will get Advance Move on both units we are adding this week.

Jaws of the Wolf:

This week we’re actually going to do something kind of odd. We will add two solos, but we will opt to take neither of them for free. You will see why in week two.

Specifically, we are going to give the list a Greylord Forge Seer to help out with the Focus load, a Widowmaker Marksmen to go hunt pesky solos and take down single wound dudes, and then a unit of Widowmaker Scouts. These five Widowmaker models will delete half a unit every turn, and give you a huge advantage into a lot of your opponent’s lists. Additionally, they will be great for triggering Road to War when we swap to Karchev next week.

The free solo slot will remain unused so that we can play a legal list, and next week I think we will be fitting something rather large in.

Kozlov
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Kodiak

Widowmaker Marksman
Greylord Forge Seer

Widowmaker Scouts

Armored Corps:

For this week, we add a minimum unit of Man O’ War Shocktroopers and the character unit Kommandant Atanas Arconovich and Standard (Hereafter referred to as Atanas). Advance Move on these guys lets the Shocktroopers get ahead of the Warjacks and provide a nice little buffer for them from the incoming enemy infantry. I thought pretty hard about maxing out the Shocktroopers this week, but Atanis and his buddy hit harder, have better range, and can give out sweet benefits like Tough, Pathfinder, or Retaliatory Strike. Remember that Tactician lets you see through models, so Atanas can stand behind the Shocktroopers and fire his gun through them. 

Shocktroopers also really like Kozlov’s Feat - ARM 23 and Speed 6 is awesome for a unit like this!

Kozlov

- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Marauder

Man O’ War Shocktroopers (min)
Kommandant Atanas Arconovich


Week Four: 

Time for some caster swaps! If you are really enjoying Kozlov, feel free to stick with him down the Armored Corps pathway - he’s completely playable for the duration of the league. That being said, you might want to try something new, and boy are Vlad and Karchev far different than Kozlov. 

Jaws of the Wolf:

We get to add a Behemoth this week and that is insanely exciting. Behemoth is one of the most iconic Warjacks of all time, and he is an absolute monster. Powerful Attack on his AOE mortars is very strong and he also one rounds anything in the game under Karchev’s feat.

Speaking of Karchev, we have some awesome new tools!

Karchev has a phenomenal Spray with auto Knock Down on it, he hits as hard as a Juggernaut, and he is tankier than the average Khador heavy thanks to unyielding. He can be faster with Arcantrik Turbine as well.

Road to War lets your speed 4 models threaten a respectable 11 inches in melee, and with four Widowmaker Scouts and a Marksmen, you should be triggering it every turn against most lists.

Battle Charged is another very strong spell, as counter-charging heavies can mess up a system or an aspect when they connect. This spell is hard to remember to play and to play around, so remind yourself and your opponent about it often.

Jump-Start doesn’t look like much, but sometimes your opponent will try and put something in the back arc of a model so that they cannot aim or charge, and you can simply spend a focus to fix that problem. It also helps your Warjacks operate at peak efficiency every single turn should your opponent have knockdown effects.

This is a very, very mean list, and I would recommend that Veteran players try something else if you are playing in a Journeyman League with many newer players. Trying to solve the Karchev puzzle when you are brand new is very hard when your opponent has a lot of experience. Remember, we are here to bring people into the game, not crush them so hard they want to leave.


Karchev
- Behemoth
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Kodiak

Widowmaker Marksmen (free)
Greylord Forge Seer (free)

Widowmaker Scouts

Armored Corps:

Vlad 2 has only one less Warjack point than Kozlov, which is a nice change from the other league guides I have written. He has a few really fantastic pieces of his kit that I would like to draw your attention to. 

First of all, Wind Blast is an insanely powerful spell on the right table and against the right casters. Being able to remove clouds and simultaneously prevent shooting is very strong. Keep in mind that anything that is a Burning Earth type of terrain is both a cloud effect and whatever other kind of terrain it is, so Wind Blast can remove those from the table. 

Hand of Fate is one of the absolute best spells in the game. You will not believe the difference it makes to your accuracy and damage output. It averages out to about +2 to hit and damage, but it tends to feel a lot better than that. 

Assail lets one of your Warjacks always threaten 10 inches and lets them charge for free which is sweet, and Arcane Might is a fantastic spell for the incoming unit of Demolition Corps since they really want the extra dice to hit to increase their chances of rolling a Critical Freeze. 

One last thought on Vlad - his feat cannot affect Atanas or Dragos since it specifies non-character models. 

Other than Vlad, this week sees us adding a max unit of Demolition Corps and their unit attachment, Dragos Dragadovich. This unit hits very, very hard when the get Critical Freeze off, and on Vlad’s Feat turn they threaten 12 inches base at MAT 10 PS 19. Their mini-feat often lets them survive a lot more punishment than it looks like they ought to, and Defensive Line means that if you give them Tough from Atanas they can just keep making tough checks. Defensive Strike from Atanas is also hilarious with Critical Freeze, since Vengeance also extends their threat range and increase their damage output. 

Vlad 2
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Marauder

Man O’ War Shocktroopers (min)

Man O’ War Demolition Corps (max)
- Dragos Dragadovich (free)
Kommandant Atanas Arconovich

Week Five: 

It’s time to start adding utility to the Armored Corps list with some solos and another command attachment, and the Jaws of the Wolf list just piles on the ARM and boxes even more. 

Jaws of the Wolf:

We are just making the list more consistent this week with another Kodiak. This gives us our third free solo, which is going to be a second Greylord Forge Seer to help out with Focus, and with our three remaining points we slot in a War Dog.

The War Dog makes Karchev insanely difficult to kill, as the Guard Dog rule makes Karchev DEF 14 ARM 21 against melee attacks - a lot of lists will have serious trouble trying to kill that.

Kodiaks are just efficient and incredibly well rounded Warjacks, and pathfinder is clutch. I really like including two of them in most Jaws of the Wolf lists.

Karchev
- War Dog
- Behemoth
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Kodiak
- Kodiak

Widowmaker Marksmen (free)
Greylord Forge Seer (free)
Greylord Forge Seer (free)

Widowmaker Scouts

Armored Corps: 

It’s time to finally fill out the Shocktrooper unit and make it a full five. To add to that, we’ll get the Unit Attachment for them involved, and then we get a free Man O’ War Kovnik. This little dude is sweet for a lot of reasons. Desperate Pace is a big deal on Speed 4 models, he’s got a sweet PS 15 blade, he’s ARM 18 against most things thanks to his shield, and this dude can Slam things as well which leads to all kinds of janky shenanigans. 

We are also going to put in a Suppression Tanker, and we are going to pay for it to get over the free points threshold. Suppression tankers are fantastic anti-infantry models and, with Hand of Fate, can often present a credible assassination threat as well. Also, the models are amazing. 

Vlad 2
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Marauder

Man O’ War Kovnik (free)
Man O’ War Suppression Tanker

Man O’ War Shocktroopers (max)
- Shocktrooper Officer

Man O’ War Demolition Corps (max)
- Dragos Dragadovich (free)
Kommandant Atanas Arconovich

Week Six: 

It’s the last week of the league, and hopefully things are starting to feel comfy and smooth. There is something really nice about knowing a list very well and hopefully that is the case here. 

I have decided that the Armored Corps list really wants a battle engine (!!!) which surprisingly works out to be both better on the table and cheaper in dollars than getting the Man O’ War Drakhun, Kovnik, and second Suppression Tanker. 

Jaws of the Wolf adds another heavy and a sweet combat solo.

Jaws of the Wolf:

By now you should be getting pretty comfortable with Road to War and Battle Charged, and this week we are just going to continue adding to the strengths of the list.

We have fifteen points, which is perfect for a Marauder and Yuri the Axe to come in. Yuri comes in and takes the free spot of the Widowmaker Marksman in order to fit, and this is a solo that has some very powerful synergies with forests. He can see through them, which is incredibly strong, and he also gets harder to hit when he is standing completely in one.

He has Stealth (great into guns!) and Weaponmaster on a 2 inch melee so he can easily finish things off or start the attrition game.

I went over Marauders in the Armored Corps week 2, all the same points apply still.

Karchev
- War Dog
- Behemoth
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Kodiak
- Kodiak
- Marauder

Yuri the Axe (free)
Widowmaker Marksmen
Greylord Forge Seer (free)
Greylord Forge Seer (free)

Widowmaker Scouts

Armored Corps:

As I said, this week there is a clear direction for this list and that is to grab yourself an Assault Chariot and smack that bad boy in the list. This is a fantastic model that clears infantry like mad and also gets Advance Move from the theme - it eats up a lot of table space. Also, since it is a Man O’ War model, it gets to move through your other Man O’ War models with Tactician which is awesome. 
You also get a free solo, so I recommend a Strike Tanker to help you with any huge bases your opponent might have snuck in there and also because Grievous Wounds is very useful against many Hordes lists. 
With the remaining two points, grab yourself a Gobber Tinker, which is a fantastic little Mercenary Model that can follow your Man O’ War around and repair them up when they get hurt. 

(I apologize to your wallet, this week is not a cheap one). 

Vlad 2
- Decimator
- Juggernaut
- Marauder

Man O’ War Kovnik (free)
Man O’ War Suppression Tanker
Man O’ War Strike Tanker (free)
Gobber Tinker

Man O’ War Assault Chariot

Man O’ War Shocktroopers (max)
- Shocktrooper Officer
Man O’ War Demolition Corps (max)
-Dragos Dragadovich (free)
Kommandant Atanas Arconovich



And there you have it! Two very sweet, fairly competitive lists and how to get there. The Vlad list, in a competitive environment, will mix that battlegroup up a bit, drop one of the heavies, and get some more solos and a unit of Kayazy Eliminators. The Karchev list probably just drops the Decimator and turns it into a Juggernaut or equivalent. Both seem very strong contenders for a Journeyman League.

I will, once again, give a word of caution to experience players - the Karchev build is extremely strong and highly punishing to new players. If you have a fair amount of Warmachine Experience and you are going into a Journeyman League with newer players, I would strongly recommend playing the Vlad 2 build or choosing a different Jaws of the Wolf caster.

Thanks for reading everyone, we will be back in two weeks (Warmachine Weekend is next week!!!) with some sweet battle reports and a Circle Journeyman League guide.