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"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
"...generalship should be informing list building." - Sir Biscuit
"I buy models with my excess money" - Valkyrie whilst a waitress leans over him

Friday, September 16, 2011

Ogre Kingdoms Now & Then - The Now Part 2: Specials

Saramoff is back looking at the new Ogre Kingdoms book. He initially looked at the old codex and is now reviewing each section in relation to the old. Previously we looked at the Core choices and now we have the Specials on display.


A price drop to 43 points means no matter what they're worth a consideration, even if we're just comparing them to ironguts. The new Leadbelchers are a bit different, a bit similar and hopefully a bit better.

They come as basic ogre bulls with leadbelcher cannons. The cannons themselves are redeigned; slow to fire, with D6 S4 hits that are armour piercing, as well as having the ability to move and fire without penalty, plus shoot at full distance. There's no more bad reloading rules to contend with anymore which means you have an actual, decent ranged option to go for now.

Full Command is still 10 points each which makes it always a decent choice, but a point of note is the Champion for Leadbelchers gets either an extra attack or a point of BS.

Overall, Ogres needed a decent anti-infantry option and Leadbelchers can provide it. Being able to move and shoot at a long range without any of said penalties makes them mobile and able to reach out to smaller blocks. Anything without a 4+ or better armour save will be shredded, so they make excellent medium armour harassers.

All in all, nothing could be worse than the old leadbelchers. They will find a use in your army but this will be a case of questioning how good they are compared to other ranged blocks, as well as if you really need them. Weigh up the options and see if they fit in your army. In most cases, they'll find a place.

Mournfang Cavalry: 

Many Ogre players cried to the heavens for Rhinox Riders, imported from Forgeworld into the new book in order to sate their love for ogres mounted on giant, wooly angry rhinos. They got front heavy, tusked cats with a large seat on top. Regardless, it's still a very lovely model with great potential for using spare bits on normal ogres, as well as adding your own.

And if half the Ogre players read their stats, they'd realise the Rhinox are better off staying at home.

A basic Mournfang racks up 60 points for Monstrous Cavalry. The ogre is a basic Ogre with light armour and a hand weapon. The Mournfang gives you M8, WS3, S5, T4, W3 and I2, topped with 4 attacks. You get D3 impact hits and stomps too. For a basic 60 points you get D3 S5 Impact hits, 4 S5 attacks, 3 S4 attacks and an Always Strikes Last S5 stomp. That is an impressive 9-11 attacks on a single rider. A full rank gets 3d3 impact hits, 12 S5 attacks, 9 S3 attacks and 3 S5 stomps. This has the potential to get very messy with support attacks.

One big thing to remember about Mournfangs is that the Mournfangs themselves don't get any support attacks. For this reason, having a wide front will make things much easier. 3-4 per rank will help you out a lot, without being overkill.

Mournfangs come in fast and hit hard. They can easily rush to warmachines and nuke them into the ground, rush around your flanks and intercept threats or even just run head first into the enemy and smash them into a pulp. The perfect hammer for a block of bulls too, one Mournfang charge into a flank will seriously damage anything it hits.

Options. Great Weapon for 6 points, which basically gives you Ironguts on tusk kitties. You can add heavy armour for 5 points, which makes you even more like Ironguts on giant cats. Ironfists net you another 5 points. This means you can get Heavy Armour and an Ironfist for a 4+ save, paired with the +2 save boost from the Mournfang's special mount rule gives you a 2+ save and a Parry save to boot. This gives them an incredible boost in survivability, especially against shooting.

Oh, you also get command for 10 points each or something. I was more focused on the 2+ save.

The two ways to gear your Mournfang Cavalry are with Heavy Armour and an Ironfist for the 2+ save or Heavy armour and Great Weapons for mounted Ironguts. It's purely defensive vs offensive in this case, as you trade a 2+ save for S6 attacks on your ogre. The choice is yours to make; will you strike last anyway against something that your armour will usually protect you from anyway, or will you need commendable, still painful damage dealing abilities with a mighty 2+ save?

4 Terminator Mournfangs with a full command nets you 310 points. Whilst it's fun to make Mournfang Deathstars, you're one magic spell away from a waste of points. Try to balance them and keep their numbers good against their cost. They hit quite hard as it is, so the only advantage of numbers is wounds and how much overkill you can produce.


I'm usually wont to give you the facts and judge for yourself but in this case, I'll outright state that maneaters are so much better it hurts.

You lost absolutely nothing and gained everything and had 30 points slashed off the cost of a basic maneater. These two simple facts means that your Maneaters are better than ever. You can even buy command options for 10 points apiece, with a look-out gnoblar for 5 and one unit can grab a single magic banner up to 50 points. You get the following options for weapons, and your Maneaters can pick their weapons individually: Additional Hand Weapon for 2 points (Maneater units won't be huge, so you'll get a decent front of attacks. Budget choice), Great Weapon for 11 points (61 point ironguts that have +1 strength is not too worth it, seeing as you want to use your precious I3. Maybe good for taking down monsters, but not much good elsewhere), Single Pistol for 7 points (seeing as you can shoot in two ranks, your 24” S4, Armour Piercing and Quick to Fire pistols will see good use. They only cost 5 points technically, as you're buying another Hand Weapon in the mix. Good option) or a Brace of Ogre Pistols for 12 (for 3 points on top of your normal pistol, you get Multiple Shots x2. At BS4 with Quick to fire you can be a very mobile gunline, pumping out crazy shots. Definitely one of the better options). They can also take heavy armour for 4 points, which is generally good but you can skimp it for points.

They also get rules to actually represent their travels around the Old World. You may pick two out of the following list, and if you have more than one Maneater unit you have to pick different ones each time (this limits you to 4 units effectively): Immunity to Psychology, Poisoned Attacks, Scouts, Sniper, Stubborn, Strider, Swiftstride and Vanguard.

The beauty of Maneaters is the ability to micro tailor them to suit your needs with every game you play. If you know what you're up against you can take your maneaters and give them the rules they'll need to get the job done. As you can mix and match equipment too, you can easily have a unit varied enough to deal with most threats. The question is, what rules work best with what?

Poison and Sniper w/ Brace of Ogre Pistols: Assassin combo. Your Maneaters rush to up an enemy and pick him out with sniper before sending a volley of 2 poisoned shots per maneater. As you can move and fire without penalty, you will only suffer long distance penalties most of the time. The beautiful part of this combination is the ability to take a Stand and Shoot Reaction and focus all your shots onto an enemies champion or hero in order to either outright kill him or severely wound him before he hits your lines. You can also do a Long Fang manuever by splitting fire into several nearby characters. This combo vastly helps to eliminate wizards, too.

Poison and Scout w/ Brace of Ogre Pistols: Warmachine combo. This combination has you set up shop 12” away from a warmachine so you can pound it with ranged fire, negating the high toughness of the warmachine with poisoned fire. It also can be used to harass high toughness troops by quickly moving into them. The idea is that regardless of what charges you, you still get 5 poisoned attacks per Maneater and a Poisoned Stand and Shoot reaction. You intend to make an enemy charge into you and your Maneaters pile on the hurt from the first shot.

You can also swap Scout for Vanguard, you'll achieve the same results. Vanguard is better if your enemy is blocking the lines with skirmishers and attempts to counter the thought of scouting maneaters in his ranks.

Swiftstride and Stubborn w/ Banner of Swiftness: In Your Fance combo. This unit is much more flexible and aims to be a generalist. You can easily take potshots from a distance and brace for an incoming charge if you pick a Brace of Ogre Pistols or you can take the fight to them with by using your high speed to crush into their men. With the Banner of Swiftness and Swiftstride, you're guaranteed longer charges to bring the threat to the enemy quicker, and being Stubborn means you'll hold your ground no matter what.

These 3 combos will be seen often, other than the Golgfag combo of Stubborn and Vanguard. What is important is to know what is useful and for when, as well as being able to take on another role easily. That's why a Brace of Ogre Pistols works so well with poisoned attacks; the ability to shoot well and pile on wounds with more close combat punch gives Maneaters two rounds to hurt your enemy. If you feel you're against a Vampire Count, Tomb King or another army where you need a character dead then Sniper helps out a lot with a Brace of Ogre Pistols.

The high flexibility of Maneatsers paired with the ability to do the job they set out to, and micro tailoring to an enemies list makes them ideal for any list. Expect to see a lot of them, they'll be popular for a reason.


It comes as little surprise that Yhetees have changed and match their Storm of Magic counterparts. Needless to say, they're still not at all that good for what they offer.

They're now flammable, with swiftstride, magical attacks and they lower enemy WS by 1 in base contact. Characters can join them now. Their biggest assets are a M7, S5 and I4. This means you'll be able to strike ahead for once and cause some decent damage, though without armour or anymore wounds/bodies for the cost they still will take a lot of damage back. They also get a champion for 10 points but no banner or musician.

Whilst their glaring defensive weaknesses shine, they do have a good purpose as a support unit. They can hang back and use their higher movement value to side-charge, hitting the enemy with I4 attacks before your other units take down their numbers and when they attack, they're at 1 weapon skill less. As a support unit, they do well in this role. The only issue is, maneaters are able to use their I3 to impressive speed for an ogre. On top of that, they have S5 and with a brace of ogre pistols, can fulfill a semi-support role such as counter charging and still go off to shoot at wizards, warmachines or belt something in the face with a pistol whip.
The fact that Maneaters have a large amount of versitility means that the value of yhetees diminishes. Paired with an important full command, it seems yhetees are made for a support role that they can't fill. Yhetees can be used as such, but in a vacuum there isn't any competition for the sweet special slot.

They can work, but other units work better. All in all, if you want a frost themed list, they won't do too bad, but maneaters still perform better.


Sabertusks have taught me to never judge a book by the cover.

Initially when I wrote about the Hunter, I gave Sabertusks a passing glance. Ogre stats but I4, W2, WS4, horrible leadership and a hunter is needed to make it better. “Great, a beast army doesn't seem workable if I have to buy a hunter for every pack.”

I forgot to take a look at their unit size. 1-10. 21 points each, no command, 1-10 unit size. Let it settle in for a moment.

Okay, let's carry on.

Having a unit size of 1 means you can run 3 individual sabertusks in a unit of 1. At 21 points each, this is cheap. What we basically have is our Great Eagle. Sabertusks move fast at M8 and as war beasts they get swiftstride, meaning charges are usually longer too. They have impressive combat stats and high initiative, meaning they'll strike ahead of most empire-level stats and rip out some bloody chunks in the process. Anybody who's familiar with using a Great Eagle sees the potential here.

At 21 points a model, a unit of 1 is going to be absolutely nothing if you sacrifice it to kill a warmachine crew. If the enemy dedicates shooting to get rid of you, they're killing a 21 point model at the end of it all, and you have up to 2 more on the field. Your Tusks can be used just like Great Eagles without the flying: charge blockers, march stoppers, counter chargers, warmachine hunters. And as you're much cheaper and still have good enough stats, you can really cause some pain.

For added fun and if you can afford it, having a unit of two tusks increases your presence a lot for any task you want to do. Solo models however can wheel unlimited amounts of times, so you sacrifice some mobility for more killing.

As for a normal unit, Sabertusks need a hunter with them due to their abysmally poor leadership. Make sure, full unit or solos, to keep them out of panic bubble distance if you're going to throw them suicidally at things. With a hunter, they become quite a strong, quick unit that can cause some decent damage. A hunter limits their speed, so the Longstrider name will help him to pick up the pace.

3 solo sabertusks costs you 63 points and in an army that doesn't have a beast focus, this will allow you to do eagle-like tricks in order to get the best out of the rest of your army. Run them like any other unit otherwise, but only take 1 with a hunter. Their low leadership will mean a lot of panic tests, and a hunter helps to quell this.


Jumping 15 points brings us the new Gorger. Gorgers now have Ambushers to make it streamlined as well as Frenzy, bumping it up to 5 attacks whilst enraged. It can now overrun and persue which is generally a boon. It still does everything it did that it once did and with a page that has absolutely no unique special rules, we can get to the heart of the matter.

At 90 points, the Gorger's price rise makes it hard to determine whether or not it's a decent choice. They are tough and strong and provide a very killy warmachine hunter (at turn 2 or later), but quick warmachine hunters are best left to Maneaters or Sabertusks. Whilst this job may be taken, Gorgers are still decent when it comes to pure, total chaos. Best taken several times in order to maximise this, gorgers appearing everywhere will throw off a game plan and preys on disrupting the threat management. At 5 S5 attacks with killing blow, they are considered a threat.

Gorgers compete with Maneaters, Mournfangs, sabertusks and even Leadbelchers for the Special slot and it's a tough contest. The best way to utilise Gorgers by far, is Skrag. He makes a whole new world for a Gorger heavy army. As a stand-alone component in a list however, they can work but remember their frenzy and remember that they won't always get there. You must also realise if a Sabertusk, Maneater or Mournfang Cavalry do the job in particular better.

And that's specials all wrapped up. Next up - Rares.

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