Today we saw the second warband preview for Warhammer Underworlds: Nightvault, with the Warhammer Community site focusing on Stormsire’s Cursebreakers. Both of the existing Stormcast warbands are pretty strong and favour particular playstyles -from what we’ve seen so far, how do their new allies compare?
Aesthetic and Models
They’re Stormcast Eternals. At this point pretty much everyone remotely interested in Age of Sigmar or Warhammer Underworlds has decided where they stand on these mostly emotionless armored giants. I’m not a huge fan of them, especially not 3 warbands worth of them, but at least the Sacrosanct Chamber have a bit more flavour with their robes and tassels and the sculpts are fairly dynamic.
Really easy, although unfortunately prone to variance. Inspiring on a spell cast is somewhere between having to spend a ploy like Spiteclaw’s Swarm (using Gambit Spells) and making a successful attack like Magore’s Fiends (using their innate Spell Actions). All 3 fighters get
As with the other Stormcast warbands, the Cursebreakers only have 3 models. This is good for defensive play, but can be a liability as losing even a single model really hurts – especially with Objectives like Unbroken Wall and their new Heavily Armed (a duplicate of Geared for War) that need 3 surviving fighters.
Averon is a solid fighter, with standard Stormcast stats and a decent range 2 attack. His spell attack is very nice (especially if they can be used as part of a charge like normal attacks) – as a level 2 wizard he’s pretty accurate with it, and after inspiring it becomes the only range 3 attack with more than 1 base damage.
Ammis and Rastus
These 2 are pretty much the same, and feel a bit lacklustre – at least until they inspire. When inspired (which is pretty easy, as mentioned above) they become a lot better, with accurate damaging attacks and decent defenses – Rastus only having 2 damage on his cleave attack is a bit unfortunate though.
Unfortunately their spell action is only really good for inspiring them, as spending an activation to get the effect of Awakened Weapon for the rest of the round isn’t great, and I’d rather get 2 defense dice on inspiring like the other Stormcast instead of their pseudo-guard effect (although it is better against cleave).
We’ve seen a lot fewer of the Cursebreakers’ cards compared to the Thorns of the Briar Queen, so it’s hard to know what kind of playstyle they will favour. They have a range of damaging spells and some ploys that from the text we can see seem to have interesting effects on spell casting, but we’ll have to wait for more details to be sure.
The upgrades we have seen seem a bit specialised, although Lightning Whip is an interesting variant on the standard damage upgrades in that it ignores Soultrap effects as it’s not a ploy or attack (but can be countered by the defending player having a reaction with the same trigger). Something to watch out for.
The best thing, though, is the return of a scatter dice/thudd gun template equivalent with the new Scatter mechanic on Chain Lightning. Is this good? Probably not. Is it fun? Definitely.
Without more detail on their cards it’s hard to be certain, but I can see the Cursebreakers being a good alternative to the existing Stormcast warbands – either as a disruptive hybrid deck like the Farstriders or a resilient defensive list like Steelheart’s Champions. I’m not as enthusiastic about them as the Nighthaunt, mostly due to Stormcast fatigue, but I’m eagerly looking forward to finding out more over the next couple of weeks.