Theme - Dark Host

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Theme - Dark Host
Cryx Theme Force

Torn from the horrors of the void and given new forms in the bodies of the dead, banes are dark, sinister warriors in the service of Cryx. Far from mindless, they possess a military cunning mixed with an utter malevolence to life. Supported by potent necromancers, armies of horrifying banes beset the enemy like a tide of darkness and death.

Theme Rules[edit]

Theme Force Restrictions[edit]

A Dark Host army can only include Cryx models from the following list:

Allowed models Which includes
Last updated 2017.06
Cryx warcasters Too many to bother listing
Non-character warjacks
Note: Character warjacks can be taken, but only if bonded with their favourite warcaster (Cankerworm with Asphyxious, etc)
Too many to bother listing
Bane models/units
Various specific models. Solos

Battle Engines

Up to one Mercenary solo and one Mercenary unit Too many to bother listing

Theme Force Bonuses[edit]

  • You may include one Mercenary solo and one Mercenary unit that will work for Cryx.
    • These models can be included even if they have the Partisan [Cryx] rule.
    • Mercenary units in this army can include attachments.
  • For every full 20 points of units and battle engines in this army, you can add one CA or medium- or smaller-based solo to the army free of cost.
    • Free models don't count towards the 20 points.
  • Bane models gain Prowl. (Prowl - While concealed this model has stealth.)
  • Before either player deploys models, you can place two 4" AOE dense fog terrain features completely within 20" of your table edge.


Thoughts on this Theme Force[edit]

Recent Release icon.jpg

Recent Release
This model/theme has only recently been released, and the content in the "Thoughts On" section is based more on theory-machine than actual gameplay experience.

Feel free to remove this warning if you, personally, have a good level of gameplay experience with the model, have reviewed this article, and either you A) agree with the content 100% or B) for the parts you disagree with, you don't strongly disagree; and it's more a case of differing opinions between you and previous editors rather than incorrect content / bad advice.

Dark Host in a nutshell[edit]

Banes are the elite infantry of Cryx, and this allows you to field an entire force of them. Given that all Bane models have Ghostly, you're going to have the upper edge in terrain mitigation. You can also easily zip into concealment to gain Stealth (including the fog from the benefit).

Thoughts on the Dense Fog[edit]

Carefully read the different versions of stuff that ignores clouds/concealment/stealth. Often you'll be able to keep at least one of bonuses. For example:

  • Eyeless Sight ignores everything.
  • True Sight ignores the clouds for LOS and ignores Stealth, but doesn't ignore the +2 DEF you get from being in concealment.
  • Ghost Shot ignores LOS and concealment, but you still have concealment which is enough to trigger Prowl & Stealth ... which Ghost Shot does not ignore.

Thanks to Prowl, running Banes into the clouds on Turn 1 is great protection vs shooting, whether it is Bottom-of-One shooting from advanced deployed stuff, or Top-of-Two shooting from stuff that ran into position last turn. But after Turn 1, your Banes should be advancing forwards as quick as possible and leave the clouds behind for your support and caster to hide in.

If you get choice of table edge, carefully review the terrain.

  • If there is good terrain within 20", you can form a LOS-blocking bunker for your caster to hide in all game.
  • If there is concealment-providing terrain at about 30", you can set-up a 'Leap Frog' strategy where your Banes run into the clouds round 1, then into terrain on round 2, for two rounds of Stealth.
  • Or, considering that you have so much Ghostly, you may prefer to choose the table edge that makes the opposite side worst for your opponent.

Note: In SR2017, dense fog placed by theme forces does not expire per normal terrain rules. [1]

Theme's weaknesses and Overcoming them[edit]

  • Low MAT - You're going to struggle vs high-DEF opponents
    • Bane Lord Tartarus can help fix this, but you may want a caster that can help out too.
  • Slow SPD - You're going to be peppered with ranged attacks on the way in. You'll probably be charged, rather than getting to charge.
    • SPD 7 on Bane Riders and Wraith Engines is still pretty good.
    • Making good use of terrain for maximum Prowl can help.
    • You'll want a caster that can help deliver the Banes, whether by buffing them (like Terminus) or preventing the enemy attacking them (like Coven).
  • No ranged attacks
    • If you want to snipe out annoying enemy solos, you'll need either Darragh, a Skarlock, or some arc nodes. Machine Wraiths can also make decent assassins against squishier support pieces.

List Building Tips[edit]

  • Your first free solo should always be Bane Lord Tartarus.
  • A Wraith Engine is almost mandatory in this list. It'll contribute to your free points, and help protect your Banes on the way in.
    • It'll push Bane Warriors to ARM 17, which makes them decently durable vs the typical anti-infantry gun (that has POW 10), and almost immune to blast damage (typically POW 6 to 8).
    • It'll push Bane Knights to a very respectable ARM 20 while in Wall of Steel, which is great vs everything except auto-one-wound attacks (such as Sniper).
    • It'll also put Bane Riders to ARM 20 but that is less great because, being multi-wound models, your opponent is going to be gunning for them with high-POW weapons anyway.
  • Darragh Wrathe is popular
    • He can speed up your army with Death Ride and provide some much-needed magic offense.
    • But at 9 points that can't be taken for free or contribute to your free points, he can be hard to justify sometimes.
  • A Desecrator is a solid choice for your heavy warjack, as it gets bonus focus while it is near Bane models.

Casters of Note[edit]

Popular Casters[edit]

  • Pirate Queen Skarre Your army reaches absurd levels of hitting-power and ARM under her feat. Typically seen with Stalkers, Wraith Engines, Darragh Wrathe, and Bane Riders. The 4" Clouds can do a lot to keep her safe after feating. pSkarre has the best hit-buff in faction: Dark Guidance.
  • Witch Coven of Garlghast & the Egregore Guns got you down? The Coven is the best delivery system in Cryx. Enemies will find themselves helpless when caught inside of Nightfall. They face a hard decision: allow Banes to charge first, or retreat their models and lose scenario presence.

Unpopular Casters[edit]

  • Bane Witch Agathia is in a weird place relative to this theme. On one hand, she is a Bane model so will gain Prowl. This can let her safely stand in the clouds all game. On the other hand, her feat and spells don't really do anything for Bane models and she can't take much of anything else.

Other[edit]

Trivia[edit]

  • Released 2017.07

Rules Clarifications[edit]

Rules Clarification: Theme Forces     (Edit)
Warning: This is a long one.

Mercenaries and Partisans
  • When you take a Partisan Mercenary, it counts as your Faction. However this doesn't increase the number of total mercenaries allowed. (Infernal Ruling)
    • Exception: If the Partisan Mercenary is explicitedly listed as one of the models you can take in the theme (such as Cephalyx in Cryx's Black Industries theme), then you can take the full FA plus your "up to one Merc" allotment. (Infernal Ruling)
  • Sometimes a specific Mercenary/Minion model/unit will gain a theme benefit of "If this model is included, it counts as a Faction model" (such as Greygore in Kriel Company). In this case, the model/unit might or might not count against your "up to one merc" limit:
    • If that Merc is in the list of models explicitly allowed (such as Savio in Storm Division), they won't count against your "up to one Merc" allowance.
    • If that Merc isn't in the list, (such as the Devil's Shadows in Slaughter Fleet Raiders), they will count against your "up to one Merc" allowance.
  • Partisans will count towards any relevant free points. For instance, Nyss will count twoards the "20 points of Retribution units" in the Defenders of Ios theme. (Infernal Ruling)
  • Partisans can be eligible to be taken as free choices. For instance, Erysis1 can be taken as a free solo in the Legion of Dawn theme. (Infernal Ruling)


Mercenaries and Ranking Officers

  • If you can include a Merc unit, and its attachments, then you can attach a Ranking Officer. This is true regardless whether or not that Ranking Officer is on the list of "Allowed models" . (Infernal Ruling)
  • Adding a Ranking Officer to a Merc unit doesn't increase the number of Merc units you can take.
  • The Merc unit will count towards your "X points of [Faction] models/units" benefit (if your theme is worded that way). (Infernal Ruling)


Mercenary Warjacks, Warbeasts, & Companions

  • As per the errata to the core rules, if your "up to one Merc" ...
    • ... can take warbeasts/warjacks, then you can add warbeast(s)/warjack(s) (without exceeding your "up to one" allowance)
    • ... comes with a Companion model, then you'll get that Companion (without exceeding your "up to one" allowance)


Bonus - One [X] gains [Y]

  • If you need to choose which models get your theme bonus, then you do this choice after deployment. (Infernal Ruling)
  • An example is how Winter Guard Kommand gives Advance Move to one-warjack-of-your-choice-per-WG-unit.
    • In comparison, Destruction Initiative gives all Servitors the Shield Guard ability so you don't need to "make" a choice.
  • You should still write on your army list how many of these bonuses you get to hand out, though, so your opponent can clearly see. (Infernal Ruling)
    • ie at the bottom of your list, you'd write "3 warjacks gain Advance Move" but you don't need to state which three are going to get the bonus.


Theme Forces, free models, and Specialists/ADR in Steamroller

  • You can swap out as many models from your main list into your specialists and vice versa as you like, but you must completely recalculate the new army list when you do, including bonuses. As long as the new army list is valid, including all free models, it doesn't matter what the left over points in your specialists are. (Staff Ruling)
  • If your theme only allows one merc solo, you can't have one in your main list and a different one in your specialists.


Unit Attachments & free points



Theme - The Bones of Orboros

  • Una1 cannot be taken in this theme (yet) due to the conflict between the theme's "Only Construct warbeasts allowed" and Una1's "Must take warbeasts with flight". There are no construct warbeasts with flight (yet). But if/when there is, then Una1 can be taken in this theme. (Infernal Ruling)

Theme - Call of the Wild

  • When it comes to other things that alter COST (such as Lamentation), follow basic maths: Double/halve first, then add/subtract.
  • Due to the way Tanith's feat is worded, during her feat turn the COST of animi cannot drop below 1. (Infernal Ruling)

Theme - The Faithful Masses

  • A Mercenary unit with an Attendant Priest does count as Protectorate unit for the purpose of calculating points for free cards. There is a bug in Warroom that prevents it counting properly. (Staff Ruling)

Theme - The Ghost Fleet

  • The "free solo" can be any kind of solo, it doesn't have to be a Revenant solo.

Theme - Kriel Company

  • Greygore/Dannon count against your "up to one Minion unit" allowance. (Infernal Ruling)

Theme - Llaelese Resistance

  • It is 2 Cruicible or 2 Cygnar or 2 Menoth.
    You can't take more than 2, and you can't mix and match from multiple Factions. (Infernal Ruling)

Theme - Scourge of the Broken Coast

Theme - Slaughter Fleet Raiders

  • The Devil's Shadows Mutineers count against your "up to one Mercenary unit" allowance. (Infernal Ruling)

Theme - Clockwork Legions

  • If you attach a small-based model to a medium-based unit, it is no longer a medium-based unit and won't benefit from Vengeance.
  • However, it will regain Vengeance when the small base dies. Furthermore, the small base dying will trigger Vengeance.
  • (Infernal Ruling)
RC symbol.png

Rules Clarification : Prowl      (Edit)

  • You can still benefit from Prowl even if the attacker "ignores concealment".
    Because even though they ignore it that doesn't change the fact that you have it, and all you need to do is have it in order to get Prowl.
RC symbol.png

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.

Models in this Theme Force[edit]

Refer to Category: Dark Host

Other themes[edit]

Theme Forces (Edit)
Cygnar Gravediggers - Heavy Metal - Sons of the Tempest - Storm Division (Edit)
Protectorate of Menoth The Creator's Might - Exemplar Interdiction - The Faithful Masses - Guardians of the Temple (Edit)
Khador Armored Korps - Jaws of the Wolf - Legion of Steel - Winter Guard Kommand - Wolves of Winter (Edit)
Cryx Black Industries - Dark Host - The Ghost Fleet - Infernal Machines - Scourge of the Broken Coast - Slaughter Fleet Raiders (Edit)
Retribution of Scyrah Defenders of Ios - Forges of War - Legions of Dawn - Shadows of the Retribution (Edit)
Mercenaries Hammer Strike - The Irregulars - The Kingmaker's Army - Operating Theater - The Talion Charter - Llaelese Resistance (Edit)
Convergence of Cyriss Destruction Initiative - Clockwork Legions (Edit)
Crucible Guard Magnum Opus - Prima Materia (Edit)
 
Trollbloods Band of Heroes - Kriel Company - Power of Dhunia - Storm of the North (Edit)
Circle Orboros Call of the Wild - Secret Masters - The Bones of Orboros - The Devourer's Host - The Wild Hunt (Edit)
Skorne Winds of Death - Disciples of Agony - Imperial Warhost - Masters of War - The Exalted (Edit)
Legion of Everblight Children of the Dragon - Oracles of Annihilation - Primal Terrors - Ravens of War (Edit)
Minions The Blindwater Congregation - The Thornfall Alliance - Will Work for Food (Edit)
Grymkin Dark Menagerie - Bump in the Night (Edit)