TOMB KINGS CHARACTER CHOICES REVIEW
NOTE: Just a bit of a disclaimer, I will be looking at all the choices within the army book and by no means do I know or realize every combo/tactic that can be achieved with this army. The following is a "highly" opinionated review and by no means should be considered complete or the "Right Way" to build/collect/play the faction in question. Mistakes will be made so do not take everything written as complete fact. Useful/helpful User input is highly encouraged. Enjoy!! :D
My Preferred Choices: (64)
I HAVE A BONE TO PICK, WHICH ONE THOUGH?
If you haven't guessed already we are nearing the end of the Tomb Kings Review with only one more article left to do "Potential Army Lists". I won't be doing a review on special characters; the reason for this is that when you decide to build a list around SC's you really limit yourself to a certain build/playstyle and for most beginning players I recommend avoiding them. The reason for this is that they can be expensive to buy and are limited with regards to being used in tournaments(At least in local events)_therefore I have decided to provide a grounds up review to playing the army, not just one character. With that said, how do the Tomb Kings themselves fit into their own army?...........
TOMB KING/TOMB PRINCE (64)
The Big Numero Uno! Every army needs a leader and because it is a Tomb Kings army after all, why not have a Tomb King? Actually you have no choice really, read the book....OOPS LOL turns out you don't need one after all. The choice you have is whether or not it is a lord choice(Tomb King) or a hero choice (Tomb Prince). With that said, the TK is fairly useful and durable. He doesn't have much armour normally(can be influenced by magic armour), but since he has Toughness 5 with several decent attacks he becomes fairly solid. As far as what items to give him you are pretty much free to choose what you want, but here are some guidelines that you should follow......If I choose a high strength weapon, how can I get the most out of those attacks. Where is my TK being deployed, in Tomb Guard? On a Sphinx? The "My Will Be Done" rule is the best reason to put the TK in a unit, so that they can use his WS to make them better at hitting their opponents. I would potentially put him in a Skeleton Warrior unit, because he adds the most value for the unit. You do have the option to put him on the Warsphinx, which is very nice and could be a decent option in larger points games when you can have two Tomb Kings. The reason for this is that while the Tomb/Sphinx combo can be fairly powerful, his basic abilities are limited. He can't use MWBD on the Sphinx and becomes an expensive target. Lastly in combat it's easier to wear down the TK for Combat Resolution, while ignoring the Sphinx. At a higher points level this becomes less on an issue and it adds alot more punch for the Tomg King against infantry.
- A Tomb King on foot, inside a unit of infantry adds alot more punch for the basic skeletons and Tomb Guard.
- A Tomb Prince on a Chariot makes an excellent addition for a unit of 3 Chariots, giving them a much needed WS boost and offers his own attacks. A great weapon is nice here.
- A Tomb King on a Warsphinx gets a command range of 18 inchs instead of 12....mind you the army is undead so they do not flee already, but at least you can use his Ld for unstable Ld checks.
- Make sure to give the TK a 2+ Ward save against Flamming attacks, he is Flammable.
- If the TK dies, he then explodes dishing out D6 wounds(ignores armour) worth of attacks, making him a real nice bomb character, better to use a Tomb Prince though....it's cheaper.
HIGH LICHE PRIEST/LICHES (HIEROPHANT)(64)
The Tomb Kings are unique for a variety of reasons, they are dead and like to pretend to eat fruit and then get upset that they can't taste anything. But by far their most unique feature is that they have a Hierophant. When you design a list, you pick a Tomb King to lead your army as the general and a Hierophant to keep the army in check. The Hierophant is always the highest level of wizard you own and if he dies during a game, your army takes an unstable test starting to slowly crumble. You take a Ld test for every unit on the board at the end of the phase he died in and at the start of every friendly turn afterwards. The TK can help alot in this respect allowing units to use his high Ld value on the test. I am also a firm believer that Tomb Kings require a strong magic phase in order to function properly; therefore in most cases you can expect to see a Lvl 4 wizard as a Hierophant. This isn't always the case, but more on that in the next article. The issue of having the HP as a Lvl 4 is that you risk alot in points if you miscast with him. Potentially causing your army to crumble. Also since you can not heal wounds on your characters with magic(Healing potions FTW), he runs the risk of getting sniped off.
The Liche priest can take the lores of Nehekhara, Light and Death. I tend to like the lore of Nehekhara the most, because it provides the most variety in terms of augements/hexes and the added benefit of healing units up again. The extra shot spell is fantastic for getting more shock value from your shooting and the killing blow spell is solid. Lastly the movement spell is nice, but situational and so you really can't rely on it. The lore of light has some nice augements as well allowing units to hit at WS 10 Int 10, which could be game changing on a Warsphinx. The lore of Death has access to everyones favorite spell the Purple Sun which is always good to use. Alas I really like the book's basic lore because it really can handle most armies and situations. Light also makes a close second in my opinion.
- If magic is your main focus go for the Lvl 4 and take the lore that suits you specific playstyle.
- Deploy towards the bulk of your army, usually in a large unit of Skeleton Archers that is escorted by a unit of chariots or Hierotitan.
- Try to put him in a place where he is less likely to get picked off early, even if that involves putting him behind the army.
- His unit and himself get a 6+ Regen save.
Another interesting character that has shown up in the book. His role according to the fluff is that he is the personal bodyguard of the Tomb King. Therefore he can block attacks against the TK on a role of 2+, except for in a challenge. He also has the option to carry the armie's Battle Standard, which is also very nice for the chance to have a magic banner. But here resides the issue I have with this character. If I am fighting an opposing unit in combat and my TH and TK are fighting together, why would I ever throw away my BSB for my TK? It would be a stupid idea, I would lose my Standard and points for that character, because lets face it he is not as tough as a TK. If I have the TK fight he can actually kill the enemy and even if he dies I get the added benefit of exploding. I can see the point of taking a normal TH with no banner, but thats basically more points for a cheaper Tomb Prince that doesn't explode or isn't as tough. The BSB doesn't allow you reroll break tests because, you never run away. Instead it lets you recieve one less wound from combat, which on basic infantry seems pointless, but on constructs that recieve one less from Combat Res already this ability really shines. Lastly, you can reroll any other Ld based tests so thats a plus and shouldn't be thrown away.
- If he is a BSB then you get a magic banner and the added benefit of rerolling failed tests like: Redirecting the charge, Stop March Blockers, Swift Reform, etc
- If you take him bare, then he is basically another level of protection for the Tomb King
- Keep towards the center of the army if he is a BSB.
- Only take if your army list needs it, otherwise consider other options and if you have spare points then spend it on him.
The newest character to join the Tomb kings, and boy is he a good one. While not a combat character by any stretch, he is basically a swiss army knife character that should be taken to perform a very specific role. Basically he gives any unit he joins the special rule Hatred; when combined with Killing blow WS 6 Skeletons can be very nice. The other ability is that he gives constructs withing 12 inchs a 6+ Regen save, which is another great added bonus for those units. Lastly he is fairly cheap and can be placed where you need him to be. However he can't have a mount so his options for units are limited.
-Place any valuable constructs (Ushabti, Sphinx, Colossus) nearby so that they can get an added Regen save of 6+.
- Hatred is a fantastic ability allowing Tomb Guard to Reroll missed hits giving them more chances to Killing Blow models
- Infantry are this models favorite place to be, unless you can sneek him into a combat with Ushabti, YAY Hatred!
WELL ROUNDED CHARACTERS
The Character choices for the new Tomb Kings book are just fantastic! They allow for alot of depth and customization within the actual army. You can really start to see where 8th edition is going with regards to characters. Instead of being army slaying gods, they are becoming more like unit upgrades that build on the basic principles of the core blocks that they lead. The choices on what characters to take are rather basic: You need a Tomb King/Prince to lead the army and a Hierophant, but after that you can spend your points to your undead heart's content. However while the characters are fantastic, you should never spend too many points in this section because you will require alot of Core and the extremely usefull Special and Rare sections, to give your army the bite it needs to win you the day. With that said you really can't go wrong with any of the extra choices in this section, but make sure everything is there for a realistic purpose. No sense putting a character in for the sake of it, make sure they have a role first before you spend too much on excessive characters
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Until Next Time