Croe's Cutthroats

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Croe's Cutthroats
Mercenary Character Unit

As a murderous band of mercenaries, Croe’s Cutthroats prefer stealth and guile over confrontations of brute strength. Many of their enemies have fallen to the poisoned weapons utilized by their unseen hands.

Basic Info[edit]

Croe's Cutthroats
MAT 7/6
RAT 6/5
DEF 13
ARM 11
Unit Size 6/10
Cost 10/16
1.6 each
See also How to Read the statblock


  • Grunts
    • Crossbow - 10" range, POW 10 ranged weapon.
    • Murder Weapons - 0.5" reach, P+S 8 melee weapon
  • Leader
    • Hiss - 10" range, POW 10 ranged weapon
    • Two-Handed Sword - 1" reach, P+S 10 melee weapon


  • The Leader has slightly better stats, as shown in the statbox.
  • Mercenary - will work as a Cryx mercenary, Khador mercenary, and as a Protectorate of Menoth mercenary
  • Backstab - This model gains an additional die to hit and damage rolls when it attacks from the target's back arc.
  • Reposition [5"] - At the end of an activation in which it did not run or fail a charge, this model can advance up to 5", then its activation ends.
  • Advance Deployment - Models with advance deployment are placed after normal deployment and may be placed up to 6" further forward.
  • Pathfinder - This model treats rough terrain as open terrain while advancing. While charging, slam power attacking, or trample power attacking, this model does not stop its movement when it contacts an obstacle.
  • Stealth - Ranged and magic attacks targeting this model from a point of origin greater than 5˝ away automatically miss. This model is not an intervening model when determining line of sight from a model more than 5˝ away.

Thoughts on Croe's Cutthroats[edit]

Croe's Cutthroats in a nutshell[edit]

The Cutthroats are a serious harrassment unit, with advance deployment, stealth, pathfinder and able to move 11" in a turn and shoot in the middle of that. Their mobility makes them a significant threat and a serious problem. However, in matchups where they can't get a back strike, they struggle as their stats are poor and they depend heavily on Backstab. If they do find their way into your opponent's backfield, they're in big trouble.

Combos & Synergies[edit]

  • Anything that can let them get into the enemy's back arc. Any caster with Telekinesis is ideal.
  • Greygore Boomhowler & Co. ambushing in The Kingmaker's Army. Your opponent is forced to expose their back arc to either Croe, or to the ambushing trollkin.
  • Any ranged damage buff. With Backstab they start to hit hard enough to hurt heavies.
  • Accuracy buffs like Fortune from Macbain or Deadeye from Damiano make them competent shooters from the front arc able to shoot and back up.

Drawbacks and Downsides[edit]

  • Unless they are getting the Backstab bonus they are strictly mediocre at combat.
  • Even with the Backstab bonus, it can be surprisingly hard to take down enemy lights. Not including Croe (because he throws the math off), it takes about 7 grunts to kill a 'typical' light (DEF 12, ARM 17, 26 HP) and 16 grunts (impossible) to kill a 'typical' heavy (DEF 10, ARM 19, 32 HP).
  • Opposing armies can negate Croes by counter-deploying something cheap vs the Croes and running straight at them. Croes can't afford to ignore the cheap unit while they get in a position for Backstab, and are 'trading down' if they engage the cheaper unit.
  • Incoming fire has right of way - and they die heavily to blasts.

Tricks and Tips[edit]

  • Remember that Croe (the Leader) does not have the Officer rule. As such, when the Leader model is destroyed, he simply field promotes with one of the Grunts.
    • If he is RFP'd, field promotion does not occur. Instead you pick a Grunt to become a unit commander.



  • Released in Warmachine: Superiority (2006)
  • In Mk1 the field promotion rules didn't exist, but Croe had a special ability to let him replace anyone in his unit when he died. Which is, for all intents and purposes, the same thing.

Theme Forces[edit]


Cryx (Edit)
Khador (Edit) Protectorate of Menoth (Edit)

Other Mercenary models[edit]



Mercenary 'Jack Controllers (Edit)
Warcasters Ashlynn - Caine3 - Captain Bart - Captain Damiano - Gastone2 - Captain Shae - Macbain - Constance - Fiona - Magnus1 - Magnus2
BGC Gastone Crosse
Marshals Colbie Sterling - Dirty Meg - Raluk Moorclaw - Rutger Shaw - Sam & the Devil Dogs
Mercenary Warjacks (Edit)
Light Buccaneer - Renegade (Magnus only) - Talon - Vanguard
Heavy Freebooter - Mangler - Mariner - Mule - Nomad - Rover - Toro
Gallant - Rocinante
Colossal Galleon
Rhulic 'Jack Controllers (Edit)
Warcasters Durgen Madhammer - General Ossrum - Gorten Grundback
Cannot take Colossals
Thor Steinhammer
Rhulic Warjacks (Edit)
Light Blaster- Gunner
Heavy Avalancher - Basher - Driller - Rockram
Colossal Earthbreaker
Cephalyx Warcasters (Edit)
Warcasters Cognifex Cyphon - Exulon Thexus
Cephalyx Monstrosities (Edit)
Heavy Subduer - Warden - Wrecker
Units, Solos, & Battle Engines
Warcaster attachments Madelyn Corbeau - Reinholdt - Wyshnalyrr
Lesser Warlocks Rorsh & Brine (Farrow) - Wrong Eye & Snapjaw (Gatorman)
Units Cephalyx Mind Bender - Cephalyx Mind Slaver - Cephalyx Overlords - High Shields - Artillery Corps - Forge Guard - Idrian Skirmishers - Kayazy Assassins - Kayazy Eliminators - Ogrun Assault Corps - Precursor Knights - Press Gangers - Sea Dog Pirates - Deck Gun - Steelhead Halberdiers - Steelhead Heavy Cavalry - Steelhead Riflemen - Tactical Arcanist Corps - Thorn Gun Mages
Special CA: Cephalyx Dominator
Character Units Alexia1 - Sam & The Devil Dogs - Croe's Cutthroats - Nyss Hunters - Blythe & Bull - Boomhowlers - Herne & Jonne - Aiyana & Holt - Lynus & Edrea - Commodore Cannon - Devil's Shadow Mutineers
Solos Cephalyx Agitator - Gobber Tinker - Ogrun Bokur - Swamp Gobber River Raider
Character Solos Alexia2 - Alten Ashley - Anastasia Di Bray - Bloody Bradigan - Bosun Grogspar - Brun & Lug - Colbie - Dahlia & Skarath - Dirty Meg - Doc Killingsworth - Eilish Garrity - Eiryss1 - Eiryss2 - Hawk - Gastone1 - Gorman - Gudrun - Harlan Versh - Hutchuk - Kell Bailoch - Lanyssa - Rockbottom - Major Harrison Gibbs - Dougal - Orin - Ragman - Raluk - Rhupert - Rorsh & Brine - Rutger - Savio - Saxon - Sergeant Nick - Stannis - Taryn - Thor - Viktor - Wrong Eye & Snapjaw
Battle Engines Hammerfall Siege Crawler
Theme Forces (Edit)
Hammer Strike - The Irregulars - The Kingmaker's Army - Operating Theater - The Talion Charter - Llaelese Resistance

Rules Clarifications[edit]

Rules Clarification : Croe's Cutthroats

  • Note that in Croe's unit there is no model called "Croe" and also there is no Officer model. This means when the Leader dies you use Field Promotion to "give" a grunt the better weapons.
    • This is supposed to represent Croe's ability to disguise himself amongst his men so his opponents only "think" they killed him. Or his ability to use henchmen as living shields.
  • However, if the Leader is hit by an RFP attack then he's gone for good and you don't do Field Promotion. You get to choose a grunt to be the Unit Commander, instead
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Rules Clarification:  : Magical Damage      (Edit)
(Click Expand to read)

* The "Damage Type: Magical" is not inherited by "secondary" damage from a weapon. That is, stuff like arcs (Electro Leap) or hazards (Scather). (Infernal Ruling)
  • All spells have "Damage Type: Magical" (refer errata).
    • This is inherited by "immediate" secondary damage (such as Eruption of Spines). (Infernal Ruling)
    • and might be inherited by "lingering" secondary damage (see below).
  • If a spell leaves a template in play that does damage to models that walk around in it, then:
    • if it is not described as a hazard it will do magical damage to models that walk around in it. (Example: Razor Wall)
    • if it is a hazard then it will not do magical damage to models that walk around in it. Instead, it does whatever damage type is specified by the spell description. (Example: Breath of Corruption).
    • (Infernal Ruling)
  • If a weapon/spell includes Magic Damage and another kind of elemental damage it will still damage Incorporeal models. Incorporeal models are not affected by the rule "if an attack does multiple types of damage and a model is immune to at least one it is immune to the entire attack."
    The phrase "immune to non-magical damage" should be interpreted as "immune to damage that doesn't include Damage Type: Magical" (not interpreted as "has immunity to Corrosion and Electricity and Cold and etc.")

Rules Clarification : Silencer - None yet. (Edit)

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Rules Clarification : Backstab      (Edit)

  • Backstab always applies on a free strike, because free strikes are always in the back arc. (Infernal Ruling)
  • Backstab applies to magic and ranged attacks, too.
  • For a caster with Backstab that uses an arc node to attack their target: Backstab doesn't care about the point of origin of the attack, and does not interact with Arc Nodes at all.
In other words, if your arc node is in the target's back arc & but the caster is not, then Backstab doesn't apply. And vice versa, if your arc node is in the front arc & you're in the back arc, then Backstab will apply.
  • Models with Circular Vision aren't immune to Backstab. They still have a back arc, and backstabbers can stand in it.
  • Steamroller objectives have facings, and can be backstabbed. (Infernal Ruling)
    • Before the game starts you should discuss with your opponent the facing of the objective.
    • In Steamroller 2017, objectives face towards the opposing deployment zone.
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Rules Clarification : Reposition      (Edit)

  • Models out of formation cannot move via Reposition. Refer to the "Out of Formation" rules in the core rulebook.
  • You cannot trigger abilities that occur "at the end of activation" (such as Sprint) after resolving Reposition, because your activation has ended. (Infernal Ruling) See also this article for a detailed explanation.
  • You cannot trigger abilities that occur "at any time" (such as Go To Ground) during a Reposition. Because you can't trigger it while moving, and after moving your activation has ended. (Infernal Ruling)
    • This holds true even if it's a unit with multiple Reposition moves. (Infernal Ruling)

Rules Clarification : Advance Deployment - None yet. (Edit)

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Rules Clarification : Pathfinder      (Edit)

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Rules Clarification : Stealth      (Edit)

  • "Automatically missing" is not the same as "cannot be hit by".
  • For instance, a stealth model can still be the target of an AOE attack and although it auto-misses, if the AOE deviates onto them they will get damaged.