Greetings Lord Tyrants and Paingivers, Dominars and Domina, Mortitheurge and Extollers,
My name is Bloodrath. Some of you may know me from the Podcast Removed From Play. Others may know me as one of the authors here at Hand Cannon Online. I have played nearly every faction and continue to faction swap seasonally.
Most recently I have taken a Sojourn back into Skorne, and plan to chronicle this journey. In true Skorne fashion I plan to draw on the wisdom of those who have come before me. I will be taking the time to put my ideas, plans, painting, and battles into an article series called “Skorne: The Way of the Hoksune”
In this article Omnus my Co-host on Removed from play will be interviewing me now that I have had some time on the table with Skorne. At the end of the article I will answer a few questions from our readers who posted questions on the Removed from play Facebook page or the Skorne Forums at Privateer Press. I hope you enjoy reading it!
I know you have played almost every faction. Which Warlock in Skorne stands out to you as the most unique or most unlike any other caster in the game?
This is actually a really hard question. My first thought is to run to Makeda 3, as she is a very unique as a warlock unit. I have always enjoy the multi-part Warlocks like Zaal, however to be honest I think the most unique warlock is actually pMorghoul. In what other faction is a 5 fury warlock your best beast caster? He can also super solo infantry by himself, and his hit and run game is insane. I have played games where Morghoul starts on one table side and ends up on nearly the complete opposite side of the board at the end of the turn. For a warlock with such a simple card he can have very complex play. Not to mention many Skorne players would consider him a top tier competitive Warlock! How many 5 Fury/focus casters can you say that about?
What would you say is the defining characteristic of Skorne compared to the other factions you have played?
Survivability. After playing factions like Circle, Cryx and Legion recently I love that Skorne has so many casters that can get work done then put themselves in a position where you are in a terrible spot to try and assassinate them. There is also the ability to use fate walker and then are far enough from the fight you can’t touch them. The faction is insanely hardy and generally can take a hit like no other and keep on coming.
Have you noticed any particularly challenging aspects to building lists for Skorne?
There are a few ever present challenges when playing Skorne and when building lists, and as such I tend to build them in pairs. We have a weak ranged game and many of our lists rely on our powerful upkeeps and animi, this presents a harsh matchup skew vs Cryx and Menoth. We often invest a lot of points into our power heavies which make prime targets for Cryx debuffs and weapon masters. This also makes heavy purification shooting lists a problem because they can concentrate fire on our few key heavies. Because of these issues I have had to work at bringing a list that can rely on infantry to get the job done. Also bringing a shield guard and a Cyclopes Shaman has never been more important. To sum it up I think Skorne has to be much more Meta conscious than many factions in today’s game.
Which formats do you think are the best for Skorne? 35vs50? Two List vs Three List? Standard Steamroller vs Hardcore?
In my opinion Skorne excels at 50 point two list formats, while it runs into issues in the single and triple list formats. In a single list format Skorne can run into many rock paper scissors matchups, and has to tread very carefully with list and caster choices. In the 3 list format Skorne runs into the Marketh conundrum. In a faction of power house spells many casters don’t just want Marketh, they NEED Marketh. Sure you can operate without him but many Warlocks are not getting the most out of their spell list if they are not cycling spells like Savagery, Fury, and Abuse. That’s not to say that there are not 3 list combinations that can operate outside of the character restrictions, just that I personally feel most comfortable build lists for a two list format.
Which non-support Skorne Unit do you expect to play the most?
To be honest the Skorne unit I expect to use the most is *cough* *cough* Gatormen Posse. In all seriousness we have a solo that makes an already amazing unit better and a plethora of spells like iron flesh, ashen veil, and fury to make them over the top great. A close second to that would be Nihilators, they are your all-purpose tar pit to help screen your advance.
Which non-support Skorne Unit do you expect to play multiples of?
There are few list specific units I would use multiples off, however none I can think of in a general sense. With Xerxis and pMakeda I could see using multiples of many of the medium based units. With Zaal I use multiple units of immortals when playing him in tier. But I can’t leave out Gatormen with Rasheth and Xerxis I could easily see using multiples units.
Which Skorne heavy beast do you expect to play the most?
In a utility style role the Gladiator will make it into nearly every list as rush is an amazing animus and it can easily earn back its lowly cost of 8 points, not to mention being an awesome end game piece.
Which Skorne Heavy beast do you expect to play multiples of?
I think that there is a place for doubles of any Skorne heavies. Many lists can easily run two Titan Sentries, two Bronze Backs, or even two Archidon’s. If I had to pick one to have doubles of it would likely be the Bronze Back as it stands alone with a great mat, an awesome damage output, and gets even better with support. Over all the Bronze Back is a solid beast.
Which Skorne Light beast do you think you will be playing the most?
This is a straight up tie when looking at my lists. Every 50 point list has either the Cyclopes Shaman, the Krea or both. They are amazing utility beast and can synergize together to create a large paralytic aura bubble. If I was forced to pick one it would be the Shaman, its capacity to help cast Rush and PA while packing a solid gun makes it the most important light in Skorne.
After your extensive discussions with Nik, Trevor and Jason, is there a list/combo/strategy that you are really excited to try on the table?
This is a tough question as there are so many lists im excited to play. Nik’s eHexeris list, Trevors eMakeda list, to name a few. But there is one list in particular that I have taken and started trying to play with the points in many different ways. The Supreme Adeptimus Zaal tier list. My base for it is a Jason Flanzer list that Nik mentioned to me, it involved a using a max unit, and two minimum units of Immortals along with the rest of the tier solo load out. However since then I have been shaping different lists out of the tier. One involves using the Mammoth as my ranged support/anti infantry and heavy hitting end game. Another involves maxing out on solos and infantry and using only a Cyclopes Shaman and Cyclopes Raider, and a Krea as my only beast. There are so many ways for that tier list to be built that I think I will likely find that perfect list for me in there.
Is there any Skorne warlocks that you feel are excellent in the Iron Gauntlet format?
Skorne makes a great IG second list for many factions as they handle Cygnar really well along with a number of other factions and matchups. I feel that Xerxis above most is the Ideal second IG list, Martial Discipline allows him to care very little for Haley2’s feat, and overall he doesn’t care much about eCain either. His powerful hitting force and feat allow him to easily destroy a colossal if need be. He is the perfect complement to the factions that struggle with matchups such as Legion, Cryx, and so on.
Have you found any models or units in Skorne that you are were surprised by on the table?
To be honest it has been the Krea, his animus I have found actually skews some games entirely and after he is done escorting troops players often forget about him and I just end up walking him around until late game. Some players forget about him entirely. Then in the late game he sneaks up and paralyzes their caster making an assassination much easier. His gun is great for semi board control preventing run/charges to beasts, and dropping Def to 7 making our hard hitting options very reliable.
Which Warlocks will you be pairing together for 2 List Tournaments?
There are so many possible two list combinations but right now if I had to pick a few pairs I would go with Hexeris2 plus Makeda1 and Zall plus Makeda 2. But Skorne has so many great options its hard to say I know I will also likely play Xerxis and Rasheth and Morghoul1 very soon as well. My indecision is terrible I know but there are so many good options in Skorne. If you asked me to pick 2 lists to take to an event tomorrow I would likely pick Hexeris2 and Makeda2 as I love both of those casters and they play very differently if had to sub out one list I would swap Makeda2 for Zaal
Now I’m going to take a minute and answer a few questions from our readers. This is something that if well received I plan to do every couple of articles.
What sort of role do ferox have?
The short answer is deep striking hard flanking disruptors. They can play out on the flanks, and have the speed to strike into the heart of combat. They can get back field and disrupt your opponents support such as chior of menoth, scarlocks, and the like. Many people see them and assume they are designed for long threat range charges which they are capable of however they don’t have the power to really destroy hard targets nor the attacks to slaughter infantry. They are designed to get behind your opponent. Disrupt their plans, slow their advance, and buy time for the main force to get in place while scalping out key support models. My favorite caster to use them with is Xerxis, accomplish all of the previous mentioned goals for him which helps his advance a lot but also he can give them fury to hit harder, and defenders ward to get stuck into your opponents lines in bad places causing order of activation issues.
Why did you start playing Skorne, and why do you continue to do so?
I have had an on again off again love affair with Skorne for years now, and I really love the looks of Skorne. I am also a huge fan of using big stompy beast to make power attacks and what better faction than Skorne to do it! They are also an underrepresented faction and I enjoy the chance to play something not often seen on the table.
Thank you to everyone who asked questions. I do plan to answer a few every couple of articles, and some of your questions will get entire articles all on their own. If you enjoyed these articles feel free to pop into the Skorne forums and let me know. If you have any questions or need any advice don’t hesitate to contact me and don’t forget to listen to Removed From Play for more Skorne talk.
Thanks for reading