by Felix Flauta (Malfred)
Following the death of Hierarch Voyle, Severius rose to power and retreated from Caspia with his Crusade.
The Northern Crusade is the only active Crusade following this change of leadership, and despite the risks exhibited by his predecessor, Severius continues to actively lead troops to battle.
The above list is 50 points and fulfills the requirements for Tier 4 of The Northern Crusade Theme Force. As a result, the Templar costs 1 less point, the army gets a bonus to its starting roll, the Exemplar all gain advance move, and the warjacks get increased SPD on the first turn of the game.
The Hierarch likes his support, and so he brings the goods.
Every turn, the Hierarch is upkeeping the Holy Ward Spell to protect a key model or unit from being hit or targeted by spells. He allocates focus as needed, and then he looks for opportunities to use an arc node to cast the Hex Blast Spell, the Fear of God Spell or the Influence Spell.
That's why the Wracks and the Hierophant Solo are there. They reduce one spell-casting by one and provide one focus point every turn. If he has to cast anything offensively, these two key solos will help ease the focus burden throughout the course of a game.
The Hierarch's Battlegroup benefits from an interesting set of benefits. This particular set was chosen for versatility.
From left to right they are the Reckoner Warjack, the Guardian Warjack, the Templar Warjack and the Blessing of Vengeance Warjack.
The Hierarch chooses a warjack for which to use his Warjack Bond Ability. While nullifying damage for one focus point might make you want to automatically give it to one of the arc nodes or the Templar for solid attrition beat-downs, Warjack Bonds have the benefit of allowing the warcaster to allocate 4 focus to his bonded 'jack. For this you might want to consider bonding the Reckoner or the Templar.
You will notice that two of the warjacks possess the Arc Node Ability. The Guardian provides a solid center arc node, while the Blessing of Vengeance can operate swiftly on the flank but with almost equal durability.
The Templar is cheaper thanks to the Theme Force. That's nothing to sneeze at.
The Theme Force increases the SPD of all these warjacks on the first turn. Thus the Guardian and Templar can run 12" on the first turn and the Blessing of Vengeance and Reckoner can run 14".
The entire battlegroup benefits when the Hierarch casts the Awareness Spell. The ability to ignore intervening models when making attacks means several things.
Of course you want to use it to shoot with the Reckoner or arc spells with the Blessing of Vengeance.
"models can make melee attacks against any target in its melee range that is in its line of sight."
Count the number of warjacks with the Reach Ability. That's right, they all have it.
When Awareness is cast, they can all target models across large based models with melee attacks and one of your 'jacks can have up to four focus.
And the Exemplar are there for the fluff. As Medium based Exemplar models they will all get to Advance Move. In addition, the Holy Ward Spell will probably start on the Bastions to make them DEF 13, encouraging opponents to target the Cinerators with shooting instead, triggering their SPD benefit.
If someone gets a chance, they target the support.
First, the list is low on choir. Eliminate them and you eliminate a major source of headaches.
The Covenant protects the Hierarch's jacks from knockdown and stationary effects. That's probably a second target.
Finally, terrain or movement effects will screw the 'jacks up in this list royally.
While my favorite types of armies feature infantry grind attrition lists, this list provides a nice 'jack heavy option for those times when I just don't want to move lots and lots of models around.
The limitations on theme forces probably means this list won't change much except to alter the make-up of the warjack models or the number of exemplar units.
I should be bringing this list to events in the near future, so hopefully I will have some interesting reports to bring back.
Battles and Commendations