I was really excited when I found out that the next army to be released for Circle was going to be focused around druids. I was even happier when it was finally out and I discovered it is actually a mix of The Bones of Orboros and Wild Hunt theme forces. I really liked the idea of Druids and Wolf Sworn models and I managed to gather a little collection throughout the years of playing Warmachine. I played Orboros only a few times in Brawlmachine and I am eager to try again 😉
I already described the changes in Ravens of War (LoE) and The First Army (Cygnar), so if you are interested, follow the links 😉
After briefly going through the cards I noticed that there are multiple models/units with two or three skills/magic abilities to chose from. Although there is a lot to remember, I find it quite interesting. This army puts versatility over raw power, I believe.
Before the army was released I was discussing with my colleagues what warlocks could take the three spots. The most common pick among us was Baldur and I was sincerely surprised he is not included here. Bradigus, Krueger, but also Tanith, Grayle and Kaya were all present in our estimations.
What about you, have you expected Bradigus, Krueger and Grayle to be here?
Bradigus Thorle the Runecarver
Bradigus was scary back in a day when he came out and I believe he still might be. He is the only serious damage buffer in the army, so I’d assume we will see him around. His basic stats and rules haven’t changed that much. He gained Dual Attack. He kept 7 FURY, but for some reason his control is 12″ and his AAT is 6. His only offensive spell is Rift, so it is not going to hurt as much as his smaller control range.
If it comes to his weapons, the magical stones he throws are now ROF D3, not ROF1 with Reload . His Stone Strike lost Beat Back, but gained Critical Smite.
His feat stayed the same. His spells, however, changed a little bit. He lost Battering Ram and gained a Rock Wall instead. This spell, used in a correct way, can definitely mess up with opponents’ plans. Bradigus can protect his battle group with the wall effectively preventing from being charged by enemy warjacks or warbeasts. Units are more difficult to block, as models can be placed over the wall. What’s more, you can use the Rock Wall to block some of the models from moving with the feat, while the other could be moved. Also, rough terrain doesn’t slow you down while being pushed.
Synergy is still there and it is the real damage and accuracy buff. Mystic Wards went up in cost by 1 FOC. It is still a powerful spell that can be easily cast turn by turn despite its price going up. Rift was changed a little bit too, it’s RNG increased to 10 (+2) and it is now a 3″ template.
Grayle the Farstrider
Grayle is here for the wolf part of the army 😉 He gained some abilities that add interesting flavour to wolf sworn models, but more about it later.
He has lost Stealth and gained Prowl instead. It is not that bad, since he also gained Fog of War. He just needs to pay for having Stealth now. If it comes to his abilities, he acquired Leadership [Wolf Sworn] that grants all friendly Wolf Sworn models Prowl and Side Step! That means that a significant part of the army, while being within 10″ from Grayle obviously, can have stealth.
He kept weapon master and Combo Strike (★ Attack) on his dual Hunting Blades.
If it comes to his feat, he can cast Fog of War free of cost and whenever a FF model kills something in his ctrl area, another model can advance up 3″ once. It is very similar to what it was before. Effectively, it gives stealth to all Wolf Sworn models within 10″ from Grayle, sadly no Stealth to his battle group.
Let’s go through his spells now. He lost quite a lot! Actually, the only spell left from his old spell list is Gallows! He lost Death March, Storm Ravager and Wind Blast. Instead, he gained Fog of War, Carnage and Vanish. The loss of Death March is compensated to an extent by the addition of Carnage. The effective +2 MAT affects the whole army now, as long as the enemy is within Grayle’s control range, and Vengeance could be a little too strong in MK4 (as all pre activation movements on units). Storm Ravager will be missed, though. It was the only damage buff in Grayle’s sleeve. Vanish, together with Sprint, increases Grayle’s mobility. On the other side, Vanish combined with Side Steps and Grayle’s feat can create interesting caster kill opportunities, don’t you think?
Krueger the Stormlord
My biggest nemesis while playing Cygnar is back in the menu. The most interesting change here is the addition of Battle Plans! The first one – Precision Strike – effectively gives friendly models Tactician within 10″. The second one – Reveille – picks every FF model within 10″ up. The third one is the most interesting I think – Thundering Heavens. Krueger gains Ionization [10″] – a great buff for all electrical damage.
Krueger lost 1 POW on his Lighting Bolt, but Thundering Heavens compensates that. Oh, btw, he also gained Dual Attack!
His feat remained unaltered, but in MK4 models pushed through rough terrain move at normal speed, so that might have interesting consequences during the game 😉 keep that in mind.
He kept most of his spells, Krueger lost only Rebuke. Lightning Storm costs one FUR less. Also, keep in mind that Telekinesis is not an offensive spell anymore, so it can target only friendly models. It has 6″ RNG now, not 8. Windstorm still gives enemy models -3 RNG while targeting friendly models in Krueger’s control range. There is no minimal range and it also has an impact on spray attacks 😉 Apart from that, all friendly models in ctrl range receive Blast Resistance.
For a short period Woldwrath was the first gargantuan of MK4. Unfortunately, he was released by accident and is now replaced by Woldwarden. There are two big groups of warbests (with an exception of Pureblood): Satyrs and Wold beasts and I am a big fan of both! Let’s get to it 😉
This is definitely my favourite Satyr model. He is also the oldest one among the little herd that we already have available. He kept the price of 10 points. I noticed another icon I wasn’t familiar with – it’s Gladiator – +2 on power attack damage rolls and power attack collateral damage rolls. To be fair, I think it could easily be a rule written on the card, instead of another icon.
He lost Counterslam, as all the reactive abilities concerning movement this one had to go too. He kept Follow up rule, and Slammer is just a Grand Slam rule, just with a different name. He also kept his animus.
Describing this model just reminded me how much I liked te original metal sculpt, I simply must get one!
I was going through the card and I simply cannot find the justification for its elevated price. 15 points, that’s a lot! Most of the warbeasts went down, not in this case. He kept his stats from MK3. Oh, he gained Dual Attack. What’s interesting, Pureblood is the only Warpwolf available in this army. Is it because of his magical attacks fitting into magical vibe of the army?
He kept all of his mutations, as well as Regeneration [d3]. His ranged attack is still RNG 10″, but it doesn’t cover the area it used to, due to changes to spray attacks. The worst part is he lost 1 POW on his Claw attacks and the only spell that increases the damage is not available to Pureblood (Bradigus can take only constructs).
Rip Horn Satyr
This model’s price increased to 12 points (+1). Rip Horn Satyr lost Hard Head rule, what used to increase the power of a headbutt power attack. In MK4 power attacks POW against equal models is hard set to 12, and against smaller models it is 14. Apart from that this Satyr kept all the remaining rules and statistics.
What is the purpose of Figt-or-Flight Instinct? I mean… Aggresive lets you run or charge without spending a focus point and this rule let you do the same, but without spending a fury point. Why not to name the ability the same though?
This Satyr is the most agile out of all Satyrs. He went down a point. Unfortunately, he also went 1 POW down on all of his melee weapons. He lost Chain Attach: Throw and Hard Head rule on his horns. For 9 points I’d expect a heavy warbeast to have more to offer than two POW 13 and one POW 14 attack. He kept Elusive, Vault (former Bounding Leap) and Set Defense.
The heaviest of the stone boys is not SPD 4 anymore! That’s right, he got +1″ SPD (5″ now). He also got +1 MAT (7 now). What’s more, he went down 3 points! All the rest remained the same, so what’s there not to be happy about?
Woldwatcher went down a point (to 8 now). He got +1 RAT (6 now) and gained 1 more ARM (18 now). He also got Dual Attack and Dig In (★ Action). However, his melee attacks are POW 12 now (-1). He lost his Stone Form that was his signature ability, but to compensate that his animus now grants Unyielding.
Stone Form used to protect both from shooting and melee attacks. Now, you have Dig In and Unyielding to do that.
He went down one point to 3 points for a 14 hp light warbeast. What’s his fury stat though? It was 2 before, so I guess it would be safe to assume it will stay this way after PP corrects the card 😉
Apart from that, all the abilities stayed the same. I can imagine Bradigus maxing out the FA of this model. 3 points for 14hp is great, isn’t it?
The floating root went down a point (to 7 now), but lost one range attack. The Arcane Strike has now 2 ROF. Woldwyrd kept Steady, Witch Hunter and his animus, Arcane Suppression. This is a big downgrade, as this one additional attack changed a lot sometimes… like losing on CK against Circle or not hahah right, Bartek? 😉
After the most recent update, Woldwarden appeared in Secret Dominion. His cost stayed the same. He went up 1 ARM (19 now!) and gained 1 more MAT (7 now). Unfortunately, his animus changed to Earth’s Blessing. It’s a pity, as I really liked the idea of creating forests here and there.
Surprise, surprise! This addition was quite unexpected and was quickly removed from the app with the next update. I hope you don’t mind seeing it here 😉 keep in mind this model wasn’t released yet, and might be subject to any changes before PP releases it.
Anyway, since we already saw the card, why not to go through it? He went down a point to 30 points per model and FA is 2. His electrical attack is now AOE 4 POW 15/8 and on a critical hit knocks down every model without Resistance: Electricity! AOE 4 can cover huge area now, so boosting is just for a chance of rolling a crit hit is reasonable. His Stone Fist melee attacks’ effect also changed and now it knocks the model hit and every other within 2″ (friendly included), so be careful 😉 His animus stayed the same and is quite useful when you take enough magical attacks in your list.
The Secret Dominion army is obviously a merge of both The Bones of Orboros and The Wild Hunt with some exceptions, though. For some reason Gallows Groove is not present here anymore. Let’s get cracking!
Stoneshaper kept his cost of 2 points per model with FA:4. This time, he has only 3 abilities, instead of 4. Earth’s Power (+2DMG on melee), Repair [d6] and Stone Spray stayed. Unfortunately, Quiet The Stones (removing or adding 1 fury on a friendly construct warbeast) is gone, but I think it is Druids’ role now. However, additional 2 DMG on melee on wold beasts is still amazing! Especially since they are more accurate now with MAT 7. It is also one of very few damage buffs in this army.
He went down a point and gained Advance Deployment! Hunter’s Mark is a powerful ability, even more in MK4, as you still can speed up your units this way.
He is one of the most recent additions to Orboros, as he is a Riot Quest solo. His cost or baseline statistics haven’t changed. If it comes to his magic abilities, Craft Talisman is now RNG 5″ (as opposed to former 3″). So I guess you won’t need an arc node that often, when you can simply increase your spells range by 7″?
Dogwoowd also got Phase Jump instead of Phase slide. The difference is that now he needs Shifting Stones to teleport. Now you don’t have to use any deviation templates and worry if he will be pushed the right way. He kept Puppet Master, but it is RNG 6″ and can target friendlies only. He lost Veteran Leader [Construct], but I think it is compensated by generally higher MAT across wold beasts cards.
His weapon however is now much, much stronger! Perviously, after hitting an enemy non-warcaster (etc.) model you could place it anywhere completely within 1″. Now it is any model within d6+3″! I cannot wait to see it in action.
Druid Wilder is now a part of a battle group. She has lost Herding ability, so she cannot extend your leader’s control range any more. She kept Medicate, but it is [d3+1] now. Oh, she has now Resistance: Blast.
What’s most important, though, is she has now Soul Slave ability! That is an amazing ability on a support model that might come handy several times during the game.
One interesting question I encountered recently is whether Bradigus can take her or not, since he can take only constructs to his battle group? I guess we will soon find out.
Krueger The Stormseer
So happy to see him here! I literally picked him up from a parcel dropbox a day before the announcement of MK4 and I was afraid I won’t be able to play him anymore ;p
He went down by a point. He lost Lifeline ability, so he cannot transfer the damage for free anymore. If it comes to his spells he kept Fleeting Storm. The minimal RNG is not mentioned there anymore, so you can reduce the range of enemy ranged attacks as much as you can. What’s interesting Lightning Blade was replaced by Lightning Tendrils. There is no DMG buff anymore, but you can increase melee range of the whole unit, not just a warbeast!
He was one of my favourite models in previous editions. His cost didn’t change. He gained Dual Attack and Ambush (that’s the new Icon I haven’t seen before :P). He still has Hunter and thanks to Leadership he gives it to other Reeves within 10″ (not Quick Work and Gunfighter anymore). He lost Quick Work, but gained Sniper.
His Double Crossbow is POW 8 now, but the addition of Sniper saved it. He also kept both of his melee attacks unchanged.
Sentry Stone & Mannikins
It used to be a unit, but now those models are Solos now! Sentry Stone and Mannikins still cost 5 points and have Advance Deployment.
You have to pay a fury now for summoning a Mannikin solo. Hopefully, PP will change the wording for the summoning, otherwise you cannot have more than 3 Mannikins in play.
Mannikins gained +2 RAT and +3 ARM! Also, they can use Fury out of a Sentry Stone while within 10″, but the rule still says it is a unit, and it doesn’t specify whether or not you can use fury on the enemy Sentry Stone? I think it will be corrected in incoming erratas.
Oh, and Claws are now magical too!
He is now a solo too! His point cost increased to 2. He has now 3 totally new magical abilities. He has Dig In , Earth Spikes and Nature’s Secrets that grants a friendly Faction construct model/unit Prowl.
Another solo for 2 points, maybe not as interesting and those already mentioned above. However, I think he might be somewhat popular in construct list lead by Grayle (because of his Fog of War), so his whole army, not only Wolf Sworn models, can have stealth.
He is still an interesting solo that cost 2 points. The only change here is that he has 1″ melee range now. He fells into the same bucket with all other 2 point solos, but in a list dominated by Wolf Sworn models I think War Wolf will find its place.
Wolf Lord Morraig
He went down a point. He lost 2 ARM, but he gained another melee attack with his shield, that grants him +2 ARM with a shield rule. There are no front arcs anymore, so it’s only an issue if you are playing against models with chain weapons. His mount Bite attack is now RNG 1″. He kept all of his rules, so with the reduced cost I think he is even more interesting!
Wolf With No Name
Another model I bought in last days of MK3 with an intention to play Brawlmachine haha
He gained +1 RAT, Dual Attack and Ambush! Unfortunately, he lost both Wanted! and Money Is Power loot tokens mechanics. It used to give him an interesting and unique flavour. I can imagine that a boosted POW 14 with weapon master attacking from a side could be potentially too strong, but it is what it is.
They cost 7 points now (-2). They lost prowl, but it is not an issue, as long as you are playing Grayle 😉 They all kept their rules, with an exception that they do not start the game with a corpse token anymore. Oh, and great news for Caleb – he has 1″ melee range now!
For some reason I always considered them to be a part of Tharn theme, but they were always Wolf Sworn models!
Druid Mist Riders
They went down a point. They lost Immunity: Electricity. They move 9″ now (+1)!
They kept Battle Wizard, and they have 3 magic abilities now, 2 of which are offensive. Chain Lightning is one of them, and it can arc to models within 3″ (not 4″ as it used to be). The second offensive spell is Stone Spray that on a critical roll can knock down the target. The third ability provides them concealment, and since they have Prowl that means they can get stealth quite easily.
Druids of Orboros
Druids of Orboros are now a 3 model unit (like Rangers in Cygnar for instance). I dig the addition of Dig in (★ Action). Point cost 4 for 3 models. Changed role to more of a support unit. They have 3 magic abilities, one of which they had before. They kept Wind Strike that deals damage and can push enemy models d3″ directly away. The second one is Condition – removing or adding 1 Fury to FF warbeasts. The third one I already mentioned earlier.
I like they way Druids have shifted. I feel it is the right direction for this unit – becoming a low model count and low cost support unit with some interesting utility abilities, don’t you think? Losing the cloud wall might hurt a little, but I don’t think it was the best way to utilize them.
Reeves of Orboros
They went down 2 points. Unfortunately, their Double Crossbow also lost 2 POW, in contrast to their Unit Attachment that kept POW 10 on their Double Crossbows 😛 I guess it is the same case as Raptors/Annyssa case in Legion of Everblight, where same weapons do not have same stats anymore (Nyss Claymore). They also lost Hunter, but it is ok, as long as you also take Reeve Hunter that provides Hunter to all Reeves within 10″.
They are not too accurate, even with UA they have only RAT 6, and that might not be enough against their only target: light infantry. I don’t believe they can threaten anything that is heavy armoured with POW 8. They still have CRA and they got Dual Attack, though.
New unit movement and placing hurt Shifting Stones a lot, as they always relied on being placed in a wide triangle. They cost only 2 points now (-1) and gained 2 ARM (20)! They kept the ability to remove Fury from FF warbeasts within 1″ (although it is written under Shifting Powers rule now). They kept all three abilities, however, they are adjusted to MK4 rules now. Healing Field remained unchanged. Shifting allows you to place one model from the unit anywhere completely within 8″, and then to place the remaining models within 2″ of it. Teleportation stayed the same, but the whole environment changed, so Shifting Stones have to stay much closer together and they are covering smaller area.
What do those changes mean? Well, Circle player will need to plan where to put Shifting Stones carefully, as they won’t cover significant area anymore. ARM 20 however, is a strong buff that might save the stones several times.
Stoneward & Woldstalkers
This is one of only two units with 6 models in MK4 (next to Gatorman Bokor & Shamblers). It’s a Stoneward and 5 Woldstalkers. Their cost haven’t changed. Stoneward lost 1 MAT (to 5), but he kept all his rules. Additionally, Zephyr might be interesting, as it bypasses MK4 movement rules.
They went down a point. They lost Rlentless Charge, but it’s all fine, as they gained Pathfinder 😉 They also gained +1 POW (13 now). I think they need Alpha to do a substantial damage. They are Wolf Sworn models, so they would benefit from Grayle’s Leadership rule – Side Step and Prowl.
Wolves of Orboros
They went down 2 points and cost only 5 now. They also lost 1 POW (10 now). Their FA stayed 3. I liked the unit before, but since they lost POW, and their UA lost Weapon Master mini-feat (more about it below) they do not seem to be as interesting.
Druid of Orboros Overseer
Overseer cost half the points he did in previous edition, however the truth is that he can support half of the unit he used to in MK3. I like the addition of Divine Retribution ability, that provides Divine Inspiration to a unit it is attached to, but when you take the size of the unit into consideration it becomes less impressive.
He definitely improves the offensive abilities of Druids. Apart from his mini-feat he provides resistance to various elementals. He has Dig In and Wind Strike, as all the other Druids. His second ability grants him Telemetry (it is now +2 to hit magical attacks against enemy models within 8″) and that allows not only Druids, but all other models that use magical attacks to hit easier.
For some reason, Overseer is missing an information to which unit he can be attached to, but I think it will be corrected soon.
Reeve of Orboros Chieftain & Standard
They cost one point less. The Chieftain kept POW 10 on his Double Crossbow. Whenever you are going to do CRA with this unit, use this model as the one making it 😉 They kept Go to Ground, but lost Hunter and War-Tempered (they can’t make CRA into melee anymore). The standard bearer received Granted: Inspiration (+1 to hit) and for some reason Granted: Rise?
I don’t know… to be fair I am not a big fan of Reeves. Do you have any idea how to use them in an interesting way?
Warpborn Skinwalker Alpha
He kept his price of 3 points. He gained +1 POW (13 now), as all Skinwalkers did. He gained Granted: Cleave, what might be an interesting combination with Side Step from Grayle. He also has now Granted: Gang (it used to be Tactics instead, so I consider it a slight nerf). He lost Night Howls mini-feat. Oh, and Alpha is also missing the information to which unit it can be attached to 😛
I believe Alpha is my favourite Orboros models from my collection. For some reason he is still not painted, that has to change soon!
Wolves of Orboros Chieftain & Standard
Well… for the moment the UA has no point cost 😀 but I don’t think they will cost more than 3 points.
The saddest part is that it doesn’t give weapon master anymore. In an army with so scarce access to damage buffs it is a big blow. Chieftain also lost 1 POW on his Cleft Spear. The only bonus is that the officer grants now Vengeance and the banner has Granted: Inspiration and Granted: Rise.
Vengeance is a potent ability in this edition and it might, in some way, compensate the lack of Weapon Master… but I’d rather take WM instead 😛
I have a little concern that is difficult to verify without having at least a game or two, but I am afraid that the army will struggle against heavy armour. Bradigus will be the one doing the heavy lifting, but armies built around Wolf Sworn models will have a tough day for sure. That’s why I think Bradigus will be the most popular pick here.
I like how some of the models that were not that popular may see the table again! I also cannot wait to play the army myself, because accidentally, most of the models I have for Circle are included in this army 😉
What is your opinion? Are you satisfied with how this army turned out to be? What are you favourite changes as Orboros players?
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