Pig (and Gator) Beasts in Skorne: How Best to Bacon (Gator Meat?)

One of the really awesome things about the new Disciples of Agony theme force is the ability for Skorne warlocks across the board to get access to Minion Warbeasts as faction models.

This really opens up our list building options, as access to some powerful new animi (Rage, Primal, Elasticity) and potent combat beaters (War Hog, Wrastler, Swamp Horror) lets some of our lesser used casters come out of the shadows and take some time in the limelight.

With that in mind, I thought i would take a gander through these new resources for the discerning Skorne player and talk about why I think they are a revolutionary change for the faction.

Gonna give these guys a rating based on my personal opinion for competitive play. They will be:

Do not recommend
For fun
Cornercase
Competitive

Dracodile:

The biggest, baddest, most mean gator on the block, the Dracodile really enjoys the Rush animus and enrage, but has little or no synergy with any other pieces that Skorne brings to the table. Prodding is less relevant than normal, since the thing already charges heavies and huge bases for free, and we don’t really have a great way to take advantage of its animus.

A blind spray is great, and it’s possible that it could see some play with either of the Morghoul’s, but as a Gargantuan it is incredibly hard to put him into the field over the Mammoth or the Desert Hydra.

Jaden’s Recommendation: For fun

Blackhide Wrastler:

This guy is a powerhouse in this faction, bringing the Rage animus to the table which turns our lights into heavy killers and any of our heavies into colossal slayers.

He’s also got a way better statline than a titan, at DEF 12 ARM 19 and Speed 5 with 3 initials. He loves prodding and Enrage, and with those three initials he takes Rush really well since Enrage gets him to acceptable damage levels. Amphibious is a rule that I expect to get more value out of in the coming months as water becomes a more common sight without hills in the game.

His only weakness is shared by most of our stable, being MAT 6, and since we now have access to Primal and Makeda 3, Xerxis 2, and Morghoul 2 all have accuracy buffs in some capacity, these guys can hit as hard as premier beatsticks while coming in a fairly cheap sixteen points.

Jaden’s Recommendation: Competitive

Blind Walker:

This guy is a bit of an odd duck. There are lots of casters in the faction that would like to bring him as an arc node, but he competes directly with the Archidon at ten points, and he is only MAT 5. He also only has an 8 inch move if he is going to use his arc node animus, unless you also put Rush on him first. ARM 20 is nothing to sneeze at, and he also has shield guard which is really sweet, but the Brute is 2 points cheaper and has a really relevant animus.

Overall, this is an incredibly cool looking model with next to no use for Skorne casters.

Jaden’s Recommendation: Do Not Recommend

Ironback Spitter:

This guy is a bit of an oddball for Skorne. We do not have any ways at all to increase his range, and with the change to Carapace rules, he sure does not like to take free strikes. This is also one of the few cases in which the Titan counterpart is probably a better (if more expensive) model. That being said, a 4” AOE of corrosion never sucks, and being virtually immune to shooting is a solid plus.

I do not expect to see many of these guys on Skorne tables, but I would love to be wrong since they are really sweet and I want to convert one into a Blastoise.

Jaden’s Recommendation: For Fun

Swamp Horror:

Oh boy is this guy a big deal for this faction. Elasticity is randomly an amazing animus as it can be put on any model, not just battlegroup models. Morghoul 2 sure likes being RNG 2 on his weapons, and RNG 2 impact attacks on Xerxis 2 and Siege Animantaraxes is sweeeeettttt.

He loves Enrage, he loves Prodding, and with just those and Rush he threats 13 inches with six attacks!

Jalaam, Xerxis 2, and Makeda 3 all love this guy, and in general he is just going to be an incredible choice for Skorne warlocks. I think most DoA lists will be bringing one of these guys; they outshine all of the non-character warbeasts in the main Skorne faction by a stretch.

Jaden’s Recommendation: Competitive

War Hog:

This guy is the melee beatstick that Skorne has always wanted to have in a warbeast. Speed 5 and DEF 12 as well as being a point cheaper than the Gladiator make him the premier beat stick that I reach for in most of my lists. With just Enrage, prodding, and the built in Aggression Dial he has nearly a 40% chance to one round a Judicator, which means that you can Rush him up to a respectable 11 inch threat range. At DEF 12, he is an interesting choice for Bulwark with Makeda, his native speed 5 goes to speed 7 with Xerxis 2, and he brings more damage output on his own than any other Warbeast in his weight class.

Get two, you’ll use them.

Jaden’s Recommendation: Competitive

Road Hog:

This is a bit of an odd duck, but 15 points for a Spray 10 continuous fire and lightning strike AND assault AND three melee attacks is still a great deal. Less innately damaging than it’s non-pyromaniacal little brother, I still think that these models have places with many of our casters. Black Spot, Mortality, and Incite all come to mind, and some casters that love Lightning Strike will bring him instead of an Archidon for the ability to contribute spray damage turn over turn.

I think he will see play, but it will take a while for him to catch on. I am very excited for them though, so I hope they find a home quick.

Jaden’s Recommendation: Cornercase/Competitive

Bull Snapper:

Even at 5 points, this little dude is hard to justify. He does not hit very hard, his animus is pretty good but not critical, and he has a mediocre threat range. They are cute! I made one into a Charmander once! But I cannot see myself playing them much.

Jaden’s Recommendation: Do Not Recommend

Boneswarm:

There aren’t a lot of lights who can easily hit at PS 20, but this model sure can. Give him three corpses, Enrage and Rage him, and he can put a heavy into the dirt.

Unfortunately, they also take a lot of resources. You need a Boilmaster, you need a Wrastler, and you need to be able to leverage the 8.5 inch threat range. Also, since you cannot Primal them (they're undead!), MAT 6 can be an issue. I can really see some cool spots with them in Xerxis 2 and Jalaam, but outside of that….who knows!

Jaden’s Recommendation: Cornercase/For Fun

Battle Boar:

This guy, on the other hand, is freaking dynamite. Slap Enrage and Elasticity on him and he’s a miniature Makeda 3 with his Dial for Killing Spree, hold him back for the game and Primal up your cheaper beast missiles, or heck, just transfer to him all game, he’s only seven points!

I absolutely love these guys, I bring 2 in a lot of lists and I bring 1 in almost all of them. If you are playing DoA, you should have some of these guys.

Jaden’s Recommendation: Competitive.

Gun/Splatter Boar:

I am lumping these guys together, since the prognosis is basically the same - Skorne has really, really good gun lights, and these guys are not in the same league. Bring yourself Shamans and Raiders if you want to shoot at things, but do not bother with these. Cyclops are faster, have access to Far Strike, and hit just about as hard.

Jaden’s Recommendations: Do Not Recommend

Razor Boars:

Frankly I am unsure how to evaluate these guys. Their animus is really interesting with a few of our Warlocks - countercharge on Morghoul 2 and Xerxis 2 is really cute - but they do not do a whole lot otherwise. They can control a zone for almost no investment, and interestingly they hit pretty hard with Skorne buffs and Rage and Brutal Charge (PS 17 charges are nothing to sneeze at), but at 7 points for a pair I will almost always bring a Battle Boar instead.

Jaden’s Recommendation: For Fun

Conclusion:

Guys - the Skorne Heavy warbeast stable is pretty unexciting compared to these new additions to our roster. Titan Gladiators will see play because of Rush, Archidons are very good in their own right, and our lights are universally stellar with the Agonizers and Kreas being staples of the faction both because of their support abilities and because they can be taken for free in this theme force. The rest of the faction heavy beasts - Aradus Soldier/Sentinel, Titan Sentry/Cannoneer and Bronzeback and Rhinodon have a very hard time competing with the brute power of the War Hog and Wrastler and flexibility of the Swamp Horror and Road Hog.

I expect to see some really interesting battlegroups coming out of this theme force in the future, and I think we are just beginning to scratch the surface on what we can do with the minions warbeasts we have at our disposal.

Also, I am so excited to do some converting - War Hogs with Exalted Armor anyone??!?! - and I want to see what you guys come up with as well.

Thanks for reading!