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Spektre
19-10-2008, 16:06
I play WH40K and looking to start a WH fantasy army and I'm really interested in starting a TK army so I need some tips on how to build a good TK army along that can take most other armies, as well as some tips on using a TK army properly.

Sleazy
19-10-2008, 16:28
the battalions a good place to start, most people dont like heavy cav so build them light. make a solid block of 20 infantry and a smaller unit of 12 archers. Of course you also get 3 chariots which you really want.

Then just add what takes your fancy, I'm sure people will advise you of various power builds but my advise is always to build what you like to use and paint.

Most go for tomb scorps, personally I really like Ushabti and carrion. I always like to have a big centrepiece in my armys and either the giant or casket are good for this.

You cant use the casket in less than 2000pts but TK struggle in small games anyway.

Ymir
19-10-2008, 22:46
Tomb Kings are an extremely fun army to play; but they're also really difficult to master. You'll likely lose a lot in the beginning. Actually, I still lose most of the time, and yet I love'em.

The batallion box is a good start, although the cavalry sucks, it's still fairly cheap for what you get.

All Tomb Kings units except the cavalry and the Icon Bearer are good choices, the army has a distinct lack of toughness though; even the hard hitters are pretty frail. You'll have to take that into account. Expand from the battalion box with whatever you like, but you'll need at the very least two Liche Priest - magic is what the Tomb Kings are all about.

The screaming skull catapult in particular are an extremely good unit that will serve you well in almost every conceivable type of game. Same goes for chariots. If you want hitting power you'll need ushabtis, a tomb scorpion, or a bone giant. Tomb Guard are tougher infantry that are really good as well. The Casket of Souls are extremely powerful, but it has the great disadvantage of tying up one of your priests; you'll likely not want to use it in every game.

Carrions and tomb swarms are good at what they do, but they won't kill anything big.

It's a matter of taste what kind of lord you use; both the Tomb King and the High Priest has great advantages - I personally tends towards the latter, but I'll use a Tomb King every once in a while. If you want to use many chariots, the Tomb King is a must, because chariots become core units when you use a King.

Aurellis
19-10-2008, 22:50
If you want great tactical advice from an expert Tomb King player message Moose. He is nigh unbeatable with his army and knows how they play inside out

Rip456
20-10-2008, 01:41
Im not an expert tomb king player(im not really good:cries:) but i can tell you that the batallion box is a good deal and that chariots are really good when used right. Also learn your magic phase inside and out.

gab-skull trasher
20-10-2008, 03:26
2 words!! BONE GIANT, were talking about a:

- 3+ sv monster.
- 6 wounds that can be regenerated (with incatations)
- A possible 2nd turn charge (with incantations)
- S6, almost always wound on a 2+
- T5, is not going to be easily wound
- And the last and best rule Unstoppable assault 4 attacks that if they wound you get and additional attack and those attacks benefit too from Unstoopable assault

A bone giant is a must have.:)

PopeAlexanderVI
20-10-2008, 04:04
Bone giant sucks for 235 points. WS3 means that he'll get an average of 2 hits, even with unstoppable assault. You won't do enough wounds to break static combat res alone and there are better, cheaper, units you can use for flankers. Also, the bone giant takes up a rare slot that is better used on Screaming Skull Catapults (one of the best units in the list) or a Casket of Souls.

luckysevens
20-10-2008, 11:12
For a start the Bone Giant's 220pts, not 235. He gets 5 attacks with his 2 hand weapons, so against WS3/4 opposition you'd hope for 3 hits, 3 wounds, 3 more attacks, 2 hits, 2 wounds, 2 more attacks, 1 hit, 1 wound, 1 more attack, miss. So a total of 6 hits/wounds at S6 - not too shabby at all.

Obviously there I'm assuming no 1s rolled to wound, and I've rounded up to-hit rolls except for the last one - on a bad day, you could do far less than 6 wounds. But that's a question of luck - no one's claiming the Giant is reliable. Even if you do fluff on the charge though, you've got the Undead Constructs rule to keep your crumbling down, and ideally you're charging the flank of a rank and file unit, or a unit of armoured knights: neither will have much CR and neither will be likely to hurt you back.

Having said all that, 2 Catapults with Skulls of the Foe cost the same as 1 Giant and so are probably more 'cost effective'. Lots of people frown upon that combo though in terms of comp, and it does make your army immediatley a bit more defensive, shooty and (in my opinion anyway) boring.

Anyway, back to the original question, if I was starting my army again I'd buy:

1 - army book
2 - battalion box
3 - character blisters for the tomb prince and liche priests
4 - An extra box of chariots
5 - the expensive stuff - scorpion(s), catapult(s), Giant, carrion, Ushabti, Tomb Guard

All of no.5 is metal and pricey, so I'd look on ebay for 2nd hand stuff. Tomb guard could be proxied/converted from the plastic warriors for a cheaper option.

As for being able to 'take most other armies' the Tomb Kings are very competitive against the older books, but will struggle a bit against the newer ones (with the exception of non star dragon High Elves). Depending on how much you plan on going to tournaments, you might get a bit frustrated by all the daemons/vampires/dark elves out there.

Zoolander
21-10-2008, 01:48
the battalions a good place to start, most people dont like heavy cav so build them light. make a solid block of 20 infantry and a smaller unit of 12 archers. Of course you also get 3 chariots which you really want.

Then just add what takes your fancy, I'm sure people will advise you of various power builds but my advise is always to build what you like to use and paint.

Most go for tomb scorps, personally I really like Ushabti and carrion. I always like to have a big centrepiece in my armys and either the giant or casket are good for this.

You cant use the casket in less than 2000pts but TK struggle in small games anyway.

I would disagree with some of this. I would go heavy cav over light - the light cav are almost worthless. The heavy cav are great line breakers. I would take at least one unit of archers, and a block unit of skellies is good. Thw chariots are really only good with a character present, otherwise, they will get stuck in combat and start losing. Ushapti are good, carrion are good, and scorpions are very good. The grave guard is a very good unit, so consider them. The giant is so-so. It is definitely NOT a must have, in fact I usually skip him. It is hard for him to make his points back on average, due to his low WS. He will hit/wound with 2 on the charge, on average, and then another 1 with unstoppable. So on average we are talking about 3 wounds (not 6 - I wish he did 6 on average!). He will lose combat more than he wins. However he does break ranks very well. The problem is, a unit of ushapti or heavy cav do the same thing for less. Plus at higher pt games, I take a casket/SSC combo, so no room! The SSC is a great war machine and I always use one. The casket you *can* take in under 2000 pts, but I would not. In under 2k games, you will struggle to win. You will struggle to win anyway, but TK is the worst army in that 1k-1500 pt range. Beyond 2k they get better. This is because they are so character heavy, to be functional.

Spektre
21-10-2008, 08:02
Ok thanks for all the advice guys all alot to consider when I start building my army, and all of this will help me out a great deal when I'm thinking about strategy. I play Total War Pc games alot and I love to have a few archers and catapults when i play so I will definately take those and chariots seem pretty cool, do chariots have any thing that sets tem apart from normal cavalry at all?

EldarWonderland
21-10-2008, 08:16
chariots

Impact hits (happen before anything else so can take out the irritating ASF models before they even get to use their ASF)

Classed as fast cavalry so can reform at will


with a TK or TP with Flail of skulls and maybe chariot of fire becomes very hitty


I haven't got any cavalry yet but might go with a unit of light so I can get some mobile archers - i often use Khalida so all my archers poison wound on any hit they make - and I am quite good at rolling 5-6 :)

Sidorio
21-10-2008, 09:38
I've been having the same idea of starting tomb kings, either them or their undead cousins the VC (except a) there cheese and b)there's already a VC player at my club)

personally i love the heavy cavalry. not much of a chariot fan myself.
you'll want the Tomb Scorpions. They're a gunlines worst nightmare as they can pop up anywhere and charge in the same turn. carrion are also useful, Ushabti are just awesome and they can hurt.
I also love the tomb Guard. they make an awesome bodyguard and can cick but with the killing blow and magical attacks.
basically Tomb Kings have excellent options for their Special slots.

with rare it depends upon what sort of army you want. note that they can get Dogs of War... which means they can get the normal giant (the not undead one) allow ing for a unit that won't crumble. Screaming Skull catapults are great for spreading panic, i've seen an entire Skaven army run in one turn from one of these, though the oponent did have ALOT of bad luck.

basically go with your gut feeling on what you want.

** you could also message kormas. he had a tomb king force for a while that only lost once... to me using brettonians. which reminds me, beware of heavy cavalry armies and guys like ogres that can hurt on the charge.:D

DeathlessDraich
21-10-2008, 10:45
Don't buy the battalion box - try ebay instead

Buy these units for a start to 2000pts:

1) 3 Liche priests on foot - don't buy the mounted model
2) 1 Tomb King
3) 30 - 40 Skeletons. At least 10 -20 bowmenand the rest can be spears
4) 1 Tomb Scorpion
5) 20 Tomb Guards
6) 3 Chariots
7) SSC

Tomb Swarms - best to make your own using bits of skeleton etc

If you want more, then consider 3 Ushabti, more skeletons and then maybe these:
another Scorpion, more Chariots, Casket, Bone Giant, another SSC, more Tomb Guards.

Don't buy
Horsemen or Carrion

W0lf
21-10-2008, 11:19
Tomb kings according to W0lf and 2 TK players with experience of over 20 years between us.

1. Always, always take the HLP. TK magic wins or loses them games. The HLp is by far the best option.

2. Skeleton warriors without bows are over pointed. 10 Pts for light armour, shield skeletons is insane when compared to any infantry unit, dwarf warrior/marauders/de spearmen/vampire skeletons all outclass them by miles. The models are nice but tbh they are 2 pts overpointed. If you MUST take them, which i advise against then never give them spears... ever.

3. Skeleton archers are amazing. Its also worth noting that large blocks can be useful. One of my mates with over 15K of painted tomb kings always takes a unit of 20 w/FC. They can reform and hold light charges and when you cast extra shooting you get 20 shots not 10. Id always suggest taking at least 20 archers, thou 10 and a unit of 20 is good.

4. Screaming skull catapults are a must. Never leave home without one. Skulls of the foe is also mandatory. Bone giants are personal taste, i dont rate them but they are fun and WAAC isnt the best way to play anyway. I suggest 2 catapults or 1 and a casket myself however.

5. Tomb guard. They are cool and not bad for the points. Taking a maximum unit and putting your tomb prince in the unit gives you a fighting block and a plave for your mandatory hero. Definatly preferable to skeleton warriors and id always have at least one fighting block with character because you will need a H2H unit.

6. Skorpions are amazing. Cheap and versatile and worth it for the opponents worry alone. Take 2 and tunnel one of them (keeping one safe) and you can cause all kinds of disruption in the enemies battle plan. AT their cost its points effective to throw them at blocks and kill weak wizards that are usually double their cost.

7. Light horsemen are useless. Between me and my 2 friends none can find a use for them.

Baisc config:

You cant go far wrong with the following starting block for an army list:

High liche priest
Liche priest
Tomb Prince
10 Skeleton archers
10 Skeleton archers
tomb skorpion
24 Tomb guard with FC and warbanner/undying legion
Screaming skull catapult with skulls of the foe.


How you go from there is your choice but i highly suggest the above as the starting block for a good list.

luckysevens
21-10-2008, 14:06
Without wanting to confuse the OP too much, some counter arguments:

1) The Tomb King vs High Liche Priest as the Lord choice is debatable. Yes the Priest boosts the magic phase, but the King gives you:

- a decent fighter with some nice magic weapon choices
- core chariots
- a magic banner for one skeleton unit
- Leadership 10 for any crumbling

The king's My Will Be Done plus three priests plus one or two bound items should be plenty of magic to get what you need done except in the most extreme anti-magic environments.

2) Skeletons with light armour, hand weapon and shield are 9pts each. Still too much compared to the vampires version, but not too bad.

3) Light horsemen are the cheapest unit in the list, and the best/only charge redirecters available. Sure they can't march or flee, but they're far from useless. Their fast cav status means you can angle yourself however you like in front of an enemy to block them up/force them into areas they don't want to be. More and more things these days have hatred and so have to overrun, making the horsemen more useful than ever.

4) Several negative opinions on carrion - what's not to like? A cheap unit of 3 can move up to 40" with incantations for early marchblocking/warmachine hunting/suicide mage hunting missions. A still-fairly-cheap unit of 5 can force people to hold against long range charges they'd normally flee from, and can capitalise on any failed terror/panic checks from the giant/SSC. Being T4 skirmishers with 2 wounds apiece, they take some shooting before they lose value, and can be healed back anyway

Just some thoughts

W0lf
21-10-2008, 17:41
I still rate the HLp far above the TK. A prince is not much weaker and does the same sort of jobs. There is ofc something to be said for core chariots but once again im not a fan of them in my gaming enviroment.

Oh and how does LD 10 affect crumbling?

Using light horsemen to redirect charges dosnt seem a brliiant plan, thats free VPs for the enemy. Thanks for the correction on Skeletons, i was thinking of the old vampire ones. AT 9 pts not so bad but still i suggest tomb guard over them. I dont really rate a unit of skeleton warriors without a character in and your general will want to be with the tomb guard.

Carrion arnt too bad but ive seen them lose combat to empire handgunners, dwarf warmachine crews and the like. They are still useful.

Badbones777
22-10-2008, 00:50
Oh and how does LD 10 affect crumbling?


A great deal when you have to roll against LD the end of the phase the Hierophant dies, and the start of every turn thereafter-Crumble isn't just a matter of combat res. In my (admittedly next to the TK players you know) limited experience, Skellies lose combats by an average 3-4. But thats only in combat. If (god forbid) the Hierophant dies, then your LD3 Skellies will be dropping (with an average 2d6 roll of 7) 4 models EVERY turn, BEFORE combat res. A TK pretty much negates that. True, a prince isn't far behind, but the LD 10 king does prove useful, as Hiero-death (and you can guarantee the enemy will go for him) will at most cause 2 model crumble-and thats with disaster level dice rolling!

Ymir
22-10-2008, 03:25
But if the Hierophant dies, you're pretty much screwed anyway. Maybe it's just me, but I don't usually pack my entire army within 12" of the general, after all.

The Hierophant absolutely cannot die. Having a Tomb King doesn't really change that fact.

Using a High Liche Priest means your Hierophant can be much more survivable than otherwise possible. (For example, he can have both the Cloak of the Dunes and the Golden Ankhra, and has 3 wounds to begin with). I'm not saying the Tomb King isn't good, he's awesome, but if it weren't for his ability to make chariots core (and thus leaving room for much more of the Tomb Kings godawesome special choices), the High Priest would be a better choice in almost every conceivable circumstance.

Allthough I would like to try the special character that's a High Liche Priest mounted in the chest of a Bone Giant, whatever his name was. Now -that's- awesome.

luckysevens
22-10-2008, 10:49
That's just it, you're not really screwed if the heirpohant dies. Sure it's bad news, but it's not game over in most cases. And of course you can't keep your entire army 12" from the general, but your army will be naturally bunched up due to the short-ish range of your priests' incantations.

Then there's the fact that plenty of TK units have pretty decent leadership: barring carrion, the special choices are all ld 8 and above, the giant's 8, any unit with a character in is at least 8.... Barring bad rolls, crumbling generally isn't the end of the world. The things you tend to lose are far ranging units like carrion, horsemen, chariots that have gotten ahead of themselves, and catapults that are alone in the backfield. Regardless of your heirophant set up (mine rides a skeletal steed in an archer bunker) you shouldn't be losing them (if you lose them at all) until mid-to-late game, so you're looking at 3-4 crumble tests tops. If you consider that things like the SSCs and diverting horsemen/hunting carrion etc will probably have done what they were going to do in the game by this point anyway (e.g. SSCs may well have been hunted down already, or there may not be good targets due to combats forming etc), they aren't such a big loss.

On the HLP, isn't a 4+ ward save on a flying model overkill? Surely the only reason you'd give the heirophant the Cloak in the first place would be so that they'd never need a ward save? They ought to be flitting about not even being seen by the enemy, or buried in safe units, no?

Back to the light horsemen, 'free VPs for the enemy' - isn't that true of all bait/sacrifice tactics? The point is that the horsemen are cheap, they're core, and they could potentially bag for you a much more expensive enemy unit by exposing a flank, or save one of your own main units by diverting enemy 'deathstars'. If you expand the unit a bit to 7 including a champion, you can even use them to tie up big nasties like bloodthirsters, star dragons and so on, allowing you a chance to get some static CR or a fighty king in there.

Carrion are indeed pathetic in combat :) That said, most things that sort of size are - Great Eagles, Fell Bats etc. Against those handgunners or warmachines though, even if you lose it shouldn't be by that much, and that's one enemy unit tied up and not shooting at you for a turn or two.

Slightly off-topic, but on special characters, I think it's criminal that the TKs only get 2, one of which you'll almost never see and the another who's middle name is 'gunline'. These days army books are getting 5+ at least :(

W0lf
22-10-2008, 10:58
Thats ebcause the speicla characters are a 7th edition trend and tomb kings are not a 7th edition book?

Yes i wouldnt bother with the ward on the HLP ether.

Oh and if your HLP with cloak of dunes dies it really is game over, if you manage to lose him that easily your not good enough with the army to win games :P

Oh and Khalida is amazing. A Tomb king whos better at casting then a liche priest? A free irresitable and a disgusting bound spell? You dont need a gunline to see why khalida is terribly effective.

DeathlessDraich
22-10-2008, 11:27
Both HLP and T King are viable options. It's simply a matter of taste just like the Bone Giant and the Casket.
Each army is played slightly differently but the basic TK tactic which is magic dependent remains.

Badbones777
23-10-2008, 16:03
But if the Hierophant dies, you're pretty much screwed anyway. Maybe it's just me, but I don't usually pack my entire army within 12" of the general, after all.

The Hierophant absolutely cannot die. Having a Tomb King doesn't really change that fact.


That's just it, you're not really screwed if the heirpohant dies. Sure it's bad news, but it's not game over in most cases. And of course you can't keep your entire army 12" from the general, but your army will be naturally bunched up due to the short-ish range of your priests' incantations.

Then there's the fact that plenty of TK units have pretty decent leadership: barring carrion, the special choices are all ld 8 and above, the giant's 8, any unit with a character in is at least 8.... Barring bad rolls, crumbling generally isn't the end of the world. The things you tend to lose are far ranging units like carrion, horsemen, chariots that have gotten ahead of themselves, and catapults that are alone in the backfield. Regardless of your heirophant set up (mine rides a skeletal steed in an archer bunker) you shouldn't be losing them (if you lose them at all) until mid-to-late game, so you're looking at 3-4 crumble tests tops. If you consider that things like the SSCs and diverting horsemen/hunting carrion etc will probably have done what they were going to do in the game by this point anyway (e.g. SSCs may well have been hunted down already, or there may not be good targets due to combats forming etc), they aren't such a big loss.

On the HLP, isn't a 4+ ward save on a flying model overkill? Surely the only reason you'd give the heirophant the Cloak in the first place would be so that they'd never need a ward save? They ought to be flitting about not even being seen by the enemy, or buried in safe units, no?

Back to the light horsemen, 'free VPs for the enemy' - isn't that true of all bait/sacrifice tactics? The point is that the horsemen are cheap, they're core, and they could potentially bag for you a much more expensive enemy unit by exposing a flank, or save one of your own main units by diverting enemy 'deathstars'. If you expand the unit a bit to 7 including a champion, you can even use them to tie up big nasties like bloodthirsters, star dragons and so on, allowing you a chance to get some static CR or a fighty king in there.

Carrion are indeed pathetic in combat :) That said, most things that sort of size are - Great Eagles, Fell Bats etc. Against those handgunners or warmachines though, even if you lose it shouldn't be by that much, and that's one enemy unit tied up and not shooting at you for a turn or two.
:(


Thats ebcause the speicla characters are a 7th edition trend and tomb kings are not a 7th edition book?

Yes i wouldnt bother with the ward on the HLP ether.

Oh and if your HLP with cloak of dunes dies it really is game over, if you manage to lose him that easily your not good enough with the army to win games :P

Oh and Khalida is amazing. A Tomb king whos better at casting then a liche priest? A free irresitable and a disgusting bound spell? You dont need a gunline to see why khalida is terribly effective.

I guess it just goes to show just how good the TK list is, since we all have different builds that we have success with, and different experiences-I have to say Ymir, that my experience is more akin to luckysevens on this issue-the Hierophant dying has never really impacted my army that much beyond the obvious loss of an incantation and a dispel dice-by the time its happened, coupled with the disproportionate amount of attention slung my poor hierophants way, Im usually in a good position to win the game anyway.

Also, unless I stick him on a chariot, I have to say I generally have no trouble keeping my entire army (certainly the skellies) within 12" of the king-the only thing that isnt is stuff that has decent LD anyway (and is a construct) and so again, the loss of the Hierophant barely matters to them. Im not saying losing the Hierophant is not a kick in the nuts, not by any means, but in my group at least, certain opponents have actually begun ignoring the Hierophant completely, as theyve been so shocked that the amount of effort and units theyve invested in getting him has had such little payback for them.

@w0lf-while I generally don't really like to bother with special characters per se, one of the few I have been tempted to have a go with is Khalida-she does indeed look awesome on paper-I'll have to give her a crack one of these days:cool:

march10k
24-10-2008, 10:43
I'm going for the chariot-mounted TK...and I'll at least start with a prince on foot in a unit of tomb guard. The king and prince's MWBD are actually pretty key to my strategy, but seem innocuous, when compared to the looming double-firing catapult and the casket, and are likely to be let through. The flip side, of course, is that I'll have to husband my disspell scrolls, but with the MWBD going off at the beginning of my magic phase and the potentially nasty (but not counted on) incantations going at the end, I suspect (and hope) that the enemy will pass on blocking them. I may find that two liches is too few and may have to drop the prince...but I'm going to give it a shot. I really want to have that prince in the tomb guard regiment.