Kaelyssa, Night's Whisper

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Kaelyssa, Night's Whisper
Retribution Mage Hunter Warcaster

Kaelyssa is the foremost strike force commander of the Retribution’s mage hunters. Her sergeants claim she can hear the heartbeats of the enemy and taste their movements on the wind. Those wizards caught in her sights are left defenseless as their own magic is negated or turned against them. To Kaelyssa her calling is a dangerous but thrilling endeavor, and with every mission she extends the depths of her formidable talents.

Basic Info[edit]

Kaelyssa, Night's Whisper
DEF 16
ARM 14
HP 16
WJP +29
See also How to Read the statblock


  • Runebolt Cannon - 12" range, POW 10, gun
    • Attack Type - Each time this weapon is used to make an attack, choose one of the following special rules:
      • Dispel - When hit with this weapon, upkeep spells and animi on the model/unit immediately expire.
      • Energy Siphon - If this weapon hits an enemy with focus/fury on it, you steal one point of focus/fury.
      • Mechanikal Seizure - A Warjack hit with this attack becomes stationary.
    • Damage Type: Magical - This weapon can damage incorporeal models.
    • Reload [2] - This model can spend focus to make up to 2 additional ranged attack(s) with this weapon during its Combat Action. It can make one additional attack for each focus spent.


  • Warcaster - All warcasters come with a stack of standard special rules - most notably being awesome.
  • 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.
  • True Sight - This model ignores clouds for LOS, and ignores Stealth always.


Backlash - Cost 2, 8" range, Offensive Upkeep

When target enemy warjack that is part of a battlegroup is damaged, its controller suffers 1 damage point.

Banishing Ward - Cost 2, 6" range, Upkeep

Target model/unit cannot be the target of enemy spells/upkeeps. Also, any upkeep spells and animi on the target immediately expire.

Blur - Cost 2, 6" range, Upkeep

Target friendly Faction model/unit gains +3 DEF against ranged and magic attacks.

Phantom Hunter - Cost 2, 6" range

For one turn, target model in Kaelyssa's battlegroup can ignore concealment, cover, stealth, & LOS when making charges and attacks.

Refuge - Cost 2, 6" range, Upkeep

At the end of an activation in which the target friendly Faction model hit an enemy model with an attack, the affected model can make a full advance that ignores free strikes.

Feat : the Vanishing[edit]

While in her CTRL range, friendly Faction models gain stealth and can't be charged or slam power attacked. Lasts for one round.

Thoughts on Kaelyssa, Night's Whisper[edit]

Kaelyssa, Night's Whisper in a nutshell[edit]

A bit on the squishy side, Kaelyssa is more of a support 'caster. With her gun's mechanikal seizure ability she can make sure you hit the enemy 'jacks that come too close and your enemy either wastes a focus for shaking stationary or forfeits an action. A well used refuge can keep your favourite 'jack out of harm's way and banishing ward makes those pesky spell slingers find better targets. Her feat can delay melee confrontation for a round and/or let you land those precious first blows.

Maximising her feat and spells[edit]

Phantom Hunter is a great spell that can be used on some of the more interesting guns on Ret's Myrmidons. Phantom hunter can help land a Momentum shot from a Banshee in places where the enemy caster thought they were safe with stealth, behind LOS blocking units/obstructions, or cover. Landing a boostable RNG 15 POW 15 from a loaded up Hydra shot is also a useful tool for putting the hurt on a opposing warcaster or warlock, or just sniping out valuable support solos.

Blur can be useful for keeping units with already high DEF alive from direct shooting. Battle mages can be DEF 18 immune to blast and House Ellowyr Swordsmen can be DEF 18 to direct shooting. Even putting Sentinels up to DEF 15 against shooting can be useful with their high armor. Be wary of blessed shots.

Refuge is a great spell to put on Kaelyssa to make maximum use of her fantastic gun, making her able to reach out and touch targets then retreating to safety. This can also be put to use to keep Myrmidons with lower gun ranges safe to get more round of shooting. Discordia being able to retreat 6 inches after spraying her fantasic 10 inch spray is almost mean, especially if you happen to clip with opposing caster/'lock. The AFG can ironically make use of this after giving up its initial move to Aim and get those wonderful bonuses, then making a 4 inch move to reposition closer or farther away from targets.

Kaelyssa has a fantastic feat for delivering units. Sentinels getting stealth and being nonchargeable guarantees a good chance of them arriving in one piece. Fast units, like Halberdiers under desperate pace and advance move could put them in an intimidating spot when they get stealth and cannot be charged. Be wary of warjacks or beasts trampling up to you and just buying attacks. Blast damage can still hurt models.

Typical Army & Strategy[edit]


Her main method of winning is assassination. Her feat can deliver a good alpha to buy a turn of two by delivering sentinels, HES, or halbs to thin your opponents numbers down. Then utilizing Ret's excellent Myrmidon shooting and Kaelyssa's own shooting prowess, wait to set up your assassination run once you have the distances. No one can hide from her battle group with Phantom hunter. Her typical build, and Ret in general, cannot attrition very well with no multi wound infantry and her lack of melee jack support. And Ret's units are too soft to hold zones in many cases if your plan is to win on scenario. The threat of sentinels and battlegroup shooting can help keep your opponent from flooding the scenarios, but it is only a matter of time before you start losing pieces. If they bring their valuable pieces too close, in this case being 18 inches from Kaelyssa or her Banshee(s), then you can make your move.


She loves taking Sentinels as her feat is a superb delivery system. They are her heavy lifters when it comes to armor. She also keeps them safer from non-boostable RAT 7 guns with Blur. House Ellowyr Swordsmen are a great jam unit with Blur putting them up to DEF 18 against direct shooting and allowing to disengage with their parry. Discordia can use her fantastic spray safely with Refuge, allowing her to gun down infantry or hope to tag opposing casters with Silence, then retreat to the optimal position for her imprint. One or two Banshees is almost a win condition alone with her since no one is safe with Phantom hunter allowing a Jack to ignore stealth, cover and concealment. What Kaelyssa doesn't like are inaccurate units unless you bring a Banshee for DEF fixing. She also has issue protecting units and solos that operate outside her feat. Also, since Kaelyssa has up to 3 shots that can dispel from a good distance away, units with blessed can be seen as redundant. Ironically these make her not work with Mage Hunters as well as she does with other units despite her fluff. She generally works with only a few Myrmidons as cycling Phantom Hunter between them or herself, as well as refuge, is her typical game plan.

Drawbacks and Downsides[edit]

Kaelyssa does not have any ARM or DEF fixers, except Phantom hunter for only her battle group. Units will have to work off their base stats in most cases. Her feat is one turn of safety, but after that her army can crumple like paper. She struggles against super heavy armor, and typically any infantry hate as her typical lists have a good portion of them dedicated to infantry.

Tricks and Tips[edit]

If you're lucky, you might be able to feat with only your models on the scenario zone. Your opponent is forced to rush in something without the movement benefit from charging. This will most likely net you the first melee blows and, in some cases, disrupt your opponent's formations.

Phantom hunter on a Banshee knocking down the opposing warcaster or warlock unexpectedly can open an assassination by cycling PH back on to her if LOS is an issue with her Gun having reload 2. Disco can easily hit the kocked down target with her spray as well to finish off the game.

Messing with an opponents fury with her siphon gun is a great way to try and get opposing warbeasts to frenzy by adding fury, or make the opposing warlock have to cut them selves to fill up their fury if you want to steal it off their beasts.



Originally released in Forces of Warmachine: Retribution of Scyrah (Novermber 2009) She likes wine and wants to eat Vyross's bird.

Theme Forces[edit]

Other Retribution models[edit]



Warcasters Rahn1 - Vyros1 - Vyros2 - Elara2 - Garryth1 - Goreshade4 - Issyria1 - Kaelyssa1 - Ossyan1 - Ravyn1 - Thyron1 - Helynna1
Warcaster attachments Fane Knight Guardian (Retribution) - Sylys Wyshnalyrr (Retribution) - Madelyn Corbeau (Mercenary)
Other Controllers Elara1 (BGC) - Sentinel Scyir - Artificer
Light warjacks Aspis - Chimera - Gorgon - Griffon - Harpy - Siren
Heavy warjacks Banshee - Daemon - Hydra - Manticore - Phoenix - Sphinx
Discordia - Hypnos - Hemera - Imperatus
Colossal Hyperion - Helios
Units, Solos, & Battle Engines
Units Destors - Invictors - Sentinels - Heavy Rifle Team - Swordsmen - Arcanists - Battle Mages - Electromancers - Halberdiers - Riflemen - Infiltrators - Strike Force - Ryssovass Defenders - Stormfall Archers
Nyss Hunters - Spears of Scyrah
Special: Eiryss3 (CA) - Soulless Escort (WA)
Solos Arcanist Mechanik - Destor Thane - Sentinel Scyir - Ghost Sniper - Artificer - Magister - Houseguard Thane - Lys Healer - Assassin - Priest of Nyssor - Soulless Voidtracer

Aelyth Vyr - Eirrys1 - Eiryss2 - Elara1 - Issyen - Narn - Nayl - Lanyssa

Battle Engines Arcantrik Force Generator
Theme Forces
Defenders of Ios - Forges of War - Legions of Dawn - Shadows of the Retribution


Retribution Mercenary Models/Units
Units Lady Aiyana & Master Holt - Lynus Wesselbaum & Edrea Lloryrr
Solos Dahlia Hallyr & Skarath - Eilish Garrity - Madelyn Corbeau, Ordic Courtesan

Rules Clarifications[edit]

Rules Clarification : Feat: The Vanishing

  • Models can still suffer slams from non-Power Attack sources (such as Smite or Force Hammer)
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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.

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Rules Clarification : Attack Type and/or Arcane Savant     (Edit)

  • If you forget to declare your Attack Type before rolling the attack, and you and your opponent can't agree on a fair fix, then the Judge's Policy is that the first listed Attack Type is the one that will be used.
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Rules Clarification : Dispel      (Edit)

  • Because Dispel causes spells to expire on a hit, it will prevent spells that trigger on a hit from triggering at all.
    • For instance, the defensive animus Spiny Growth causes any model that hits the target to suffer d3 damage. This damage will not occur if it's hit by a Dispel weapon.
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Rules Clarification : Siphon Bolt and/or Energy Siphon     (Edit)

  • The focus/fury is stolen on "Hit", before they have a chance to spend it to reduce/transfer damage.
  • If you hit something which can't have focus reduced (ie Egregore) then you still get +1 focus, and they ignore the -1 focus. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : Mechanikal Seizure      (Edit)

  • Remember, stationary only prevents what it says it does. Refer the recap on stationary for what models can/can't do.
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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.")
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Rules Clarification : Reload      (Edit)

  • You can use Reload to make additional attacks after a Special Ranged Attack. (Infernal Ruling)
  • If you have (x2) of a weapon with Reload (such as Caine1), the special rule will only be written on the card once. But you can reload both weapons to the max limit. (Infernal Ruling)

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Rules Clarification:  : Warcaster      (Edit)
(Click Expand to read)

  • General
    • FOCUS (uppercase) is the stat printed on the warcaster's card. Focus (lowercase) refers to focus points a model currently has.
    • Your CTRL area is double your FOCUS stat, not double your focus points. (Infernal Ruling)
    • Casting spells or using feats is an anytime ability with the added restriction that you can't use them on the same turn you run even before you run.
      • See also the clarifications on Any Time abilities (below).
    • Some warcasters are also Battle Engines and thus follow all the Battle Engine special rules.
      • There is no particular interaction between the Battle Engine rules and the Warcaster rules.
    • Work out all damage modifiers (such as Decapitation doubling the damage that exceeds ARM) before reducing it with the Power Field. (Infernal Ruling)

Restrictions on "Any Time" abilities     (Edit)      
  • "Any Time" abilities can be used at any time during a model/unit's activation, except:
    1. The model with the Any Time ability has had their activation end "prematurely". By this I mean you resolve anything which includes "its activation ends". Examples include:
      • Running, failing a charge, or failing a slam.
      • Abilities that include "then its activation ends" (such as Reposition and Teleport).
    2. In between declaring your charge target and making your charge movement. (Infernal Ruling)
    3. In between completing your charge movement and determining whether it was a successful charge. (Infernal Ruling)
    4. You're in the middle of moving. (Note: Impact Attacks count as being in the middle of movement).
    5. You're in the middle of an attack. Note that the attack is not over until you finish step 14 of the attack sequence (Apdx A).
    6. Your opponent interrupted your activation to trigger one of their own abilities, such as Countercharge.
  • In general you can use "Any Time" abilities while you're knocked down or stationary (except Spells and Feats which specify you can't).
  • If you have a gun with a random ROF, you can use an "Any Time" ability inbetween rolling the number of shots and actually making the first attack. (Infernal Ruling)
  • Units with "Any Time" abilities
    • Even if the ability says "any time during the unit's activation", a model in a unit can't use an Any Time ability if they run, fail a charge, or use an ability like Reposition.
    • Because that model's activation has ended (even if the unit's activation is still ongoing) and you can't use abilities on models that are not active.
    • So, for example:
      • You cannot use a minifeat after the Officer runs. (Infernal Ruling)
      • You cannot use a minifeat after anyone in the unit has begun a Reposition move. (Infernal Ruling)
  • Warcaster/Warlock Cavalry ( Edit )
    • Warcasters/Warlocks can't cast spells or use their feat while resolving Impact Attacks. Because Impact Attacks occur during movement - you can use spells or feat before moving, or after moving, but not during movement.
      • Exception: If your Impact target(s) include your charge target, then your movement has ended (refer rulebook, last paragraph of 'Impact Attacks') and thus you're fine to use "any time" abilities before starting the Impact attacks.

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Rules Clarification : Warcaster Unit or Warlock Unit     (Edit)
This summary is specific to Warcaster/Warlock units. You may also want to check the Warcasters & Warlocks page for the 'regular' rules clarifications.

  • If you're giving an order, it must be done first, before casting any spells or using your feat.
  • All models in the unit count as part of the battlegroup. So, for instance, Butcher3's argus can be moved via his Energizer spell.
  • Only the warcaster/warlock model can dominate a Steam Roller scenario. They can do that regardless of where the grunts are.
  • The grunt models can contest Steam Roller scenarios, but not control them.
  • Warcaster units can have attachments. They can even attach units (such as the WSC). (Infernal Ruling)
  • Units Buying Attacks (Edit)
    • If you make attacks with model [A], then start making attacks with model [B], you cannot 'go back' and buy more attacks with [A]. Because:
    • A model can only buy additional attacks during its Combat Action.
    • A model in a unit must complete its Combat Action before the next model starts theirs (with some exceptions, like CMA).
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Rules Clarification : Unit of Warcasters or Warlocks     (Edit)

  • Even though they're warcasters, if they're out of formation they suffer the normal penalties (can't make attacks, actions, spells, etc).
  • They can't upkeep each other's spells.
  • They can only dominate one SteamRoller scenario element at a time.
  • Each warlock/warcaster can have different upkeeps on them if those upkeeps are "target SELF" or "target model". If you cast an upkeep that is "target model/unit", that is the only upkeep any of them can have.
  • Units Buying Attacks (Edit)
    • If you make attacks with model [A], then start making attacks with model [B], you cannot 'go back' and buy more attacks with [A]. Because:
    • A model can only buy additional attacks during its Combat Action.
    • A model in a unit must complete its Combat Action before the next model starts theirs (with some exceptions, like CMA).
  • The Legion Twins
    • Rhyas cannot dominate a zone while out of formation.
    • Rhyas can use the feat while out of formation.
  • Haley3
    • Only Haley Prime is an 'actual' warcaster model, and as such she is the only one that can dominate a scenario element.
    • The echoes can Control/Contest scenarios like a normal unit.
    • Haley Prime can dominate an element even if the echoes are out of formation.
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Rules Clarification : Pathfinder      (Edit)

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Rules Clarification : True Sight      (Edit)

  • You only ignore clouds for LOS. Models can still get the concealment bonus, trigger Prowl, etc from clouds. (Infernal Ruling)
  • A model that ignores Stealth must ignore both aspects: both (1) the auto-missing, and (2) the 'not counting as an intervening model' parts.
    • This can have some strange interactions with casters & channelers, if one has True Sight and one does not. There are examples on the Category:Channeler page.

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Rules Clarification : Backlash      (Edit)

  • Backlash doesn't affect Jack Marshals, because they don't have battlegroups.
  • Backlash triggers from any damage, not just attacks. So stuff like fire and corrosion on the warjack will also cause harm to the warcaster.
  • Backlash won't trigger if you take control of an enemy warjack (for example with a Machine Wraith) because it's not part of its original battlegroup while under your control (refer 'Battlegroup Commander' in the core rulebook).
  • Backlash + Feedback (Edit)
    • If you stack Backlash and Feedback on the same enemy warjack, then the warcaster will take two damage every time the warjack is damaged.
    • Furthermore, the warcaster has to spend two focus to negate this damage.
      Because it's two different effects which are both resolved at Step 10a of the Attack Sequence (Apdx A of core rulebook) but have to be resolved one at a time (refer 'Triggers' in the core rulebook).

Rules Clarification : Banishing Ward - None yet. (Edit)
Rules Clarification : Blur - None yet. (Edit)

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Rules Clarification : Phantom Hunter      (Edit)

  • A model that ignores Stealth must ignore both aspects: both (1) the auto-missing, and (2) the 'not counting as an intervening model' parts.
    • This can have some strange interactions with casters & channelers, if one has Eyeless Sight and one does not. There are examples on the Category:Channeler page.
  • Ignore LOS (Edit)
    • Since you ignore LOS, you can target models in your back arc. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : Refuge      (Edit)

  • If a caster puts another upkeep on themself between making the kill and the end of their activation, Refuge won't trigger. (Locked thread)
  • Refuge happens at the end of your activation, but not after your activation has ended. This means you can still use "Any Time" abilities after resolving the Refuge move (such as casting more spells). See also the article on End of Activation.
  • An AOE attack that misses it's original target, but then deviates onto an enemy, still counts as a "hit" and thus will still trigger Refuge.