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Tutorial Warhammer Siege with Lizardmen Tactica

Discussion in 'Lizardmen & Saurian Ancients Tactics' started by Scalenex, Jun 2, 2013.

  1. Scalenex

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    Very Brief Summary of How Siege Works

    In case you don’t have Blood in the Badlands and want to follow this anyway here is a quick and dirty summary.

    Each side buys equipment with a points allowance equal to their army size from a short list in the Blood in the Badlands Book. A 2500 points army thus has 2500 points of defending or attacking siege equipment. Siege equipment tends to be expensive so one tends to get far more mileage out of your regular points than your Siege points.

    The game starts out with the defenders losing some casualties to a starvation roll. Each model has a 1 in 3 chance of losing a wound. Then the defenders roll dice (based on their artillery and “Sally Forths”) to try to remove attackers’ artillery and the attackers roll dice based on both artillery and “Undermines” purchased as Siege equipment to try to take out defending artillery and breach the walls.

    Each tower, gate or Fortress section is treated like a connected building with a small number of exceptions.
    -At the beginning of the game, the defending side can split a unit in half and put them in different sections.
    -Attacking from the outside penalizes the WS and I of the attackers unless they fly, have a siege tower, or are attacking from an adjacent fortress section
    -Any unit can occupy a building, even if they aren’t normally allowed to occupy buildings
    -Adjacent sections controlled by a friendly side add CR
    -Friendly units in adjacent sections can use their move to switch places
    -Every unit without a missile wweapon gets a drop rocks stand and shoot even if they are undead or have BS 0.
    -War machines can share a building with another unit
    -Breaches mean the losing side is pushed out with out break test, though unlike losing a break test they aren’t wiped out

    There are three tokens placed on the Fortress. The attacker automatically wins if they can take all three within five turns.

    The defender wins if they hold on to two tokens or they get a relief force to enter the Fortress through a gate.

    If the attacker has two tokens the winner is determined by victory points. In most cases this means the attacker wins, unless the attacker is using Zap Brannigan tactics.

    A typical fortress has four towers, two wall sections, and one gate. Wall section and towers have pretty much the same game effects but some defensive equipment is specified as only for towers. The gate lets the controller move troops through it as if were open ground. Gates are also slightly easier to breach than other sections. If you go into the realm of grand armies, you probably want a bigger fortress. If you are playing with a small number of points, you could probably cut it back to to two wall sections, one game, and two towers if both sides agree.

    How to Assault a Fortress with Lizardmen

    There are three things you need to do. If a piece of siege equipment or a unit you want to take doesn’t do one of these three things, it’s dead weight.

    First: you want to take the fortress sections in close combat as quickly as possible. At LEAST half your points should go here.

    Second you want to block the relief force from entering the gate. You can do this with one good unit. You don’t want to spend more than 20% of your points on models to do this. If you are very confident that you can take the gate(s) quickly, you don’t have to worry about the relief force coming through it at all though that is a gamble.

    Third, you want to breach as many sections as you can. This ties directly into objective number one. You don’t have to actually kill all the defenders if you can push them out. Once evicted, an enemy unit’s odds of recapturing a lost section are pretty low.

    Attack Force and Breaching Force

    Saurus Warriors are the best unit we have. That’s 20 S4 attacks per building assault (and full PF on all 20 attacks regardless of your take on the PF debate since none are supporting attacks). The downsides of Saurus Warriors (low WS and I) are not that big a deal during Sieges since attackers are generally penalized in both those things and we can’t really get much worse in those categories. You want at least two large blocks. More if you decide not to take Temple Guard or Kroxigors.

    Temple Guard are good too. They hit harder and have better WS and I. To get the full benefit of these better traits you should probably put your Temple Guard in a Siege Tower. The best thing about Temple Guard is that they can take magic standards. You want the Banner of Eternal Flame. It’s cheap and it lets your re-roll damage when assaulting a building. Building assaults are pretty much all you that you are trying to do so 10 points is a bargain.

    Kroxigor get 9 attacks at S7 and 3 Stomps per assault (assuming they have enough models to do that). That’s not bad. Sauri are better, but Kroxigors can take Battering Clubs which means they can breach a wall. There is no difference between one Kroxigor with a Battering Club and three. If you are using Kroxigor to batter a wall down, it’s best to assault with a Kroxigor unit and Saurus simultaneously. You only have to give up three Saurus attacks to have a chance to breach. If the Kroxigor are out of useful targets to breach, they can do conventional assaults. Not as good as Saurus Warriors, but not bad.

    Stegadons, Ancient Stegadons, Troglodons, Bastilodons, and Carnosaurs with battering clubs have exactly the same chance of breaching a wall as a single Kroxigor. They also take up the space of five attacking Sauri rather than three. Not a good deal. The rules are unclear whether Great Bows count as bolt throwers or not. If they do, they have a slim chance of taking out defending artillery in the pre-battle phase and a large chance of being killed by the defending artillery. We Lizardmen generally have no artillery to shoot at. I’d suggest keeping it that way. Make all the defender’s points spent on defending artillery go to waste.

    Don’t take Skroxigor. A Kroxigor block will give you 9 S7 attacks and three S5 Stomps. A Skroxigor will get you that plus one Skink attack. Since the Skinks step up, you are basically feeding the defenders free CR by killing a bottomless supply of Skinks. Bad idea. Also Skroxigor are not really Monstrous Infantry, so at best you are bending the rules if you try to give them Battering Clubs.

    If you have points to spare, a few Scar Veterans and/or an Oldblood are a good idea. You only have a maximum of ten models per assault so if you really want to take a section fast, swap one of the attackers with a Saurus character

    Taking full command is a waste of points. Standards don’t add CR to you (magic standards are worth it but are Temple Guard only). You only need champions for the extra attack and musicians to break ties. I’d stick with Champions. Musicians aren’t likely to matter very often, but when the rare times occur that you want them are times when you REALLY want them.

    Stopping the Relief Force

    In my first Siege battle as attackers, I was winning until the relief force sneaked in. The relief force might roll late to arrive and in a poor spot, but you can’t count on that. You have to be ready to deal with the contingency of the enemy relief force arriving where and when the defenders want them.

    Don’t make my mistake, a unit needs five models to trigger the auto-win. A chariot can hurt your attacking blocks but it can’t trigger an auto-win. A block of infantry won’t move fast enough to get through the gate. The main things you have to worry about are skirmishers and fast cavalry. Don’t worry about hitting the other relief forces until all the units capable of triggering an auto-win are dead.

    If you choose a Hasty Assault, the Relief Force has almost no chance of making it through the gate. This means your enemies have half the starvation rolls and you get half the siege equipment. It’s a tough choice but it might be worth it since Sauri are so efficient at the scaling the wall you don’t need as much Starvation and Siege Equipment to get the job done.

    Tactically if you can take the Gate and hold it, the relief force can’t get in. Any siege defender is probably going to put their toughest unit here so you are going to want to put a high concentration of your forces here if you have no other anti-relief force contingency.

    Unless your luck is really bad, you pretty much only need to stall the relief force once. A jungle swarm base with another swarm an inch behind it will give you that one turn.

    A couple Razordons will take out most skirmishers and fast cavalry with a stand and shoot followed by close combat. They can also shoot at fortress sections while waiting for the relief force to arrive.

    A unit of Skink Skink Skirmishers or Cohort Skinks can hold up most light relief forces. It’s not as hard wearing as the other things you can be using, but you have the benefit that you can throw javelins at the fortress while you are waiting for the relief force to arrive (even with hard cover, they can hit on 6s at close range with javelins). They can also hold Skink Priests which can target spells for your Slann and roast would-be relief forces with magic (assuming you picked a lore with nice direct damage and magic missiles anyway).


    You want a Slann. It doesn’t matter a whole lot if you run him solo or with Temple Guard. You have three sides of a fortress to assault and you can only cast spells at one, so you should take some Skink priests to channel spells through to other sides. This also lets you load up on dispel items and/or the Forbidden Rod.

    Fire is ideal. You have two buffs that well let your assault forces put flaming attacks on the buildings (remember you re-roll failed to wound rolls with flaming attacks) and lots of magic missiles to shoot at fortress sections you are not currently assaulting in close combat with Skink priest channeling them towards those spots. Those same Skink priests you use to channel magic missiles into unengaged wall sections can also channel your magic missiles towards the relief force units when they arrive.

    High magic is good. Fiery Convocation is even deadlier now. Drain Magic should help nullify your enemy’s buffs and hexes (buffs and hexes are the go-to spells for defenders). You can swap spells you don’t want out for Fireball and Shem’s Burning Gaze for extra flaming magic missiles (or any other spell you want). The two spells to dump first are probably Hand of Glory and Walk Between Worlds. Hand help you little since most of your troops will be eating a WS and I penalty. Walk is even less useful since your troops will pretty much start in charge range.

    Light is also good. Two magic missiles, one of them flaming. Speed of Light will counter the penalties you get for assaulting fortress sections and Timewarp will give your Saurus blocks 30 attacks per assault.

    Shadow is another good choice. You potentially have three Hexes and a buff to let you brutalize the defenders and you don’t even need Skinks to help you aim them.

    A Jack of All Trades Slann with all eight signature spells would serve you fairly well with enough Skink priests to help you aim your spells. Lots of direct damage to throw around, three of them are flaming attacks. Wyssans Wildform, Iceshard Blizzard, and to a lesser extant Melkoth’s Miasma can help you swing the more difficult combats in your favor.

    Heavens attack spells are about inflicting high strength hits on small numbers of units. Usually the siege defenders will be numerous and weak. Comet is good because the entire defending force is stationary. The downside is that the risk of losing models to friendly fire will be high since most of your units will be an inch away from the enemy. Heaven buff and hexes are okay. If you are feeling lucky, Chain Lightning can make it around the whole perimeter of an enemy fortress.

    Death is good if you think the defenders are going to be relying on their characters. Now that we can channel direct damage spells through Skinks, well positioned Priests will let you cook the characters on all sides of the fortress making Death much stronger than it used to be. Also Purple Sun doesn’t do much since you only hit d6 models per building section.

    Beasts doesn’t boost or hex enough units at a time to be worth taking a Slann. Wyssan’s Wildform with a Skink Priest is all you need, the rest of the lore is just dead weight.

    Metal is not a good choice. Most low armor save units are cavalry and chariots which are pretty inefficient defenders so you won’t have many targets begging you to use Metalshifting on.

    Life keeps your forces alive, but being the attacker is more about killing things than surviving. Dwellers is the only decent spell for Siege attackers.

    Everyone Else

    Unless your magical strategy is based on battlefield control spells, you probably want some Skink priests to help aim direct damage and magic missiles. You probably want Skirmishers to give your Skink Priests a buffer against shooting and give them mobility. If your Skink priests aren’t there to target magic missiles and are instead merely there to caddy magic items, you can attach them to your attacking Saurus blocks. Since you get to nominate the attacking models, you don’t have to worry about your Skink Priest dying in close combat.

    Salamanders seem tempting because they have flaming attacks. Don’t be fooled. You can only hit d6 targets per building section at a time. You only have five turns to take the fortress. Even if you are regularly hitting two or three building sections per flame template, the body count will probably accumulate far too slowly.

    Non-Salamander shooters are even less efficient. If your shooters are waiting to do something else (like jump the relief force) or just there as a body shield (like a unit for Skink Priests) you might as well shoot at something, but don’t plan your attacking strategy around shooting.

    Cold One Cavalry can enter building sections but they still have to dismount before attacking. Since most of your forces will start out eight inches from the fortress you don’t need the extra speed. They are a waste of points as Siege attackers

    Since Swarms aren’t very good for Siege Attackers and your Initiative scores will be in the toilet due to the penalty for scaling walls, Bastilodons will also be dead weight. Your army will be scattered over three different places so the Engine of the Gods will be hard pressed to buff enough units to be cost effective. Troglodons and Carnosaurs are an inefficient use of points for attacking the walls. You want lots of attacks with moderate hitting power, not a moderate amount of strong hitting attacks.

    Siege Equipment

    The only things we can take are Hasty Assault, Siege Towers, Battering Rams, Battering Clubs, and Undermines (we have no use for Siege Ammunition and the other options are army specific).

    As mentioned before Hasty Assault is for those REALLY worried about the relief force. If you take Hasty Assault you pretty much don’t have to worry about the relief force at all, but the rest of your work will be harder. It’s also worth noting that a Hasty Assault always costs half your Seige points regardless of whether you are playing a 1000 point game or 5000 point game. The larger the points size of the battle, the greater the opportunity cost of choosing a Hasty Assault.

    Siege Towers benefit any attacking unit. Since Siege Towers are the most expensive siege equipment item as 200 Cohort Skinks, so you want to think carefully about how you want to use them. When are Siege Towers worthwhile? It prevents your attackers from having their Weapon Skill and Initiative cut in half. We don’t have a lot of WS or I so this penalizes us less than other races. If you are fighting a high WS defender (average WS4 for Core) than Siege Towers benefit Saurus Warriors relatively little. In general, you should limit Siege Tower to your Temple Guard or a Saurus Warrior block that has a Slann in it (since you want to make sure as many buffed attacks hit as possible). If you are facing a low WS defender, taking multiple Siege Towers starts to become more practical. Siege Towers also become more useful if you feel you absolutely must bring your Solardon to the party.

    Battering Rams are probably the best friend of a LM Siege attacker. They are only 100 Cohort Skinks points apiece and they are classified as a chariot not a war machine so they can’t be killed in the defending artillery phase. They have to kill your Battering Rams with regular shooting which means your foe will have to make a hard choice between shooting your attacking units and shooting the Battering Rams. Best of all you can attempt to breach a section simultaneously while attacking with a unit without penalizing your attackers in any way. I’d advise one battering ram per major attacking unit. Because I don’t take Stegadons and Salamanders on my lists, I use howdah less Stegadons prodded by Salamander handlers to stand in as living Battering Rams. The same principle works for Bastilodons. That’s Siege in style!

    Battering Clubs do the same thing as Battering rams at half the price—sort of. If you don’t take Kroxigor or Stegadons you can’t equip Battering Clubs. Essentially it means you split the difference between Siege Points and regular points. Regular points that could be spent on Saurus or spellcasters. Using a Battering Club unit means you have to reduce the size of your Saurus assault parties by three or five models. That’s a major downside of Battering Clubs.

    A Battering Ram is done all game once it breaches one section (since it can’t maneuver sideways). The advantage of Battering Club troops is they can attempt a breach OR make a conventional assault giving you some flexibility so the troops aren’t worthless after they breach a section, they can head for another section or begin a regular assault. . You don’t have to take Kroxigor or Stegadons but if you do, you pretty much have to take Battering Clubs or your larger units won’t pull their weight.

    Undermines cost 50 Cohort Skinks for what amounts for a one six chance of causing a Breach. I don’t like those odds. What I do like is that Undermines take effect BEFORE the main battle phase and they can be targeted at any wall section you choose. While the odds of any one Undermine working are low, there is nothing the defender can do to stop it except pray to the dice gods. Some players like to spend half, most or all of their Siege points on Undermines. I can’t fault that strategy since if you throw enough dice at undermines you’ll probably get something. I just find tunneling under the walls a bit Skaven-y. Personally I find Undermines a fine way to spend the remainder of your points after buying everything else but I wouldn’t go out of my way to stock up on them.

    How to Defend a Fortress with Lizardmen

    An assaulting Lizardmen force and a defending Lizardmen force are as different as night and day.

    You can win in theory by bleeding the attacking force dry, but your primary goal is to simply survive. Your secondary goal is to prevent breaches.

    You either to need to hold out for five turns or get a relief force unit through your Gate. This means holding the Gate should be your top short term goal.

    Basic Defenders

    Point for point, Skink Cohorts are the best defenders we have. Most of your defending units should be Skink Cohorts.
    -Skinks are cheap so the starvation roll won’t slow you down much.
    -Skinks have a poisoned quick to fire missile weapon so you will get an extra potent stand and shoot every time you are charged.
    -A Saurus block can only wait for the attackers to come, but a Skink Cohort can throw ten poisonous sticks every turn giving you something to do during your turns besides casting spells.
    -All building defenders are Stubborn. It’s not hard to cover your entire fortress with a single Slann BSB, so there is no Ld difference between Skinks and Sauri. Rerollable Ld9 or 10 is nearly unbeatable forcing your opponent to wipe out all your defending units to the last Skink (or breach the walls).

    Your opponent will try to concentrate on one Skink unit at a time. Remember you can switch adjacent defenders so you replace a severely diminished Skink block with a fresh one.

    Skroxigor are not required, but they aren’t a bad idea. The opportunity cost of a Kroxigor is 10 Skinks but a Kroxigor adds some optional hitting power. Also a Kroxigor can only take a max of one wound on a Starvation roll (the aforementioned 10 Skinks will be knocked down to 6.67 Skinks on average). If you have a Life or High Slann you can use the lore attribute to keep your Kroxigor healthy round after round. To save points you can just put Kroxigor in SOME of your building sections and use your ability to swap units to get them where they are needed.

    MOST of your defending units should be Cohorts, but not ALL of them. A good size Cohort will fend off attackers for five rounds as long as they don’t have a breach. If you are Breached, you can try to plug the hole by buffing the crap out of the defending breached unit or hexing their attackers, but chances are, you’ll lose at least one section after its breached.

    You want at least one block of Saurus or Temple Guard with your Slann to contain the damage if you lose a section. They should initially be deployed in your Gate because that’s usually the high priority section for both players.

    A Temple Guard and or Saurus block backed by a Slann and the Banner of Eternal Flame should be defending at least one of your sections. Your Saurus unit can simultaneously fight off attackers from a captured building section and launch counter attacks. It’s okay to lose a single section, you can still win. If you are paranoid about losing two sections, take two blocks of Sauri.

    A Saurus character or two won’t hurt and there is no reason why you can’t deploy them with Skinks. They should probably be tooled to fight challenges with other characters. Since each building assault is a separate fight, you don’t even have to win your challenges out right if you have a Life or High Slann. As long as the Saurus survives you can keep having the Slann heal them up to full round after round. Each round the Saurus character saves many Skinks’ lives. If you happen to kill the enemy characters in the process, even better.

    Non-magic Standards are useless to your defenders. Musicians are only useful if you tie a battle (which is relatively unlikely for Skinks, relatively likely for Saurus). As long as your Slann BSB is alive, your units should be able to handle any break test you have to take since they are all Stubborn and test on the Slann’s leadership.

    Anything else you have defending the fortress sections is an inefficient use of points. You need cheap bodies to fill the walls, perhaps boosted by characters. More elite units are a waste of points just daring the dice gods to screw you over with poor starvation rolls.

    Proactive Defenders

    There is nothing wrong with using entirely basic defenders but some proactive defenders wouldn’t be amiss unless you are playing against an opponent with zero artillery.

    Enemy artillery will generally be positioned out of javelin throwing range, so a few units of Terradons, Ripperdactly,s or Chameleon Skinks will let you eliminate these long range threats. Sadly you can’t take them out before the Pre-Battle Phase but you can make sure they don’t get to fire again at you later. The one good thing about being surrounded on all sides is it’s almost impossible to deploy artillery in a way that’s not wide open to Scouts and Fast Cavalry. Start out with the things that are probably packing Siege Ammunition (cannons and stone throwers) then move on to the others.

    Remember even your Scouts and Vanguard have to take Starvation rolls. Since Terradons and Ripperdactlys are multi-wound models they are slightly less vulnerable to this than Chameleon Skinks but I still think a mix of the two units is best. Use the flyers for the relatively close war machines and Chamo Skinks for the more distant ones. You don’t need that many. You should probably charge with Chamo Skinks in lieu of shooting (unless you are packing Flaming Ammunition which is normally used up in round one) since if you fail to kill a unit in CC, at least it can’t shoot at you while engaged.

    Do you want to keep anything in the courtyard? That’s up to you. If you have one Saurus block, it should be defending the gate. If you have TWO Saurus blocks and enough Skinks to occupy the rest of the Fortress, it’s not a bad idea to keep the Saurus in the courtyard. They can be positioned to counterattack any section that is captured. You can also charge them out the gate to fend off would be attackers. It’s still a risky use of points since anything spent on the courtyard is not contributing directly to your defenses.

    I don’t know if it’s practical, but the idea of a Stegadon charging out of a temple fortresses gate makes me happy. Probably not worth the 50 or so Skinks the Stegadon's point cost could have bought since you’ll lose all your bang after the Impact Hits Round. An Engine of the Gods in the courtyard is moderately tempting. Once all the attackers are one inch from your various walls it would not be hard to use Burning Alignment hit many opponents at once. The ability to lower casting difficulties wouldn’t hurt, especially if you are fielding two Slann with the same Lore, but the Gungan Shield won’t help you much since most of your defenders will also have parry saves. Also, the Gungan Shield won’t stop a wall from being breached with Siege Ammunition. Bastilodons will do even less because most of your forces will already outclass your enemy’s Intiative scores (probably) anyway due to the penalty for scaling walls.

    The Relief Force

    If you can get a five model unit through the gate, you win automatically. Your best bet to enter the gate is Skirmishers, they have a 12 inch march move and can easily swing around interposing units. They are also cheap so you can buy a couple of these without drastically diminishing your defense forces. Cold One Cavalry are another good choice with a move of 14 inches, they aren’t as maneuverable though.

    If the dice are not with you, your relief force might arrive at a side wall and thus not facing your gate. If you got a quick relief force roll you might have enough time to loop your force around to the gate. If not, your relief force cannot trigger an auto-win. They can still help you win by rear charging an attacking unit preventing them from taking a section. The best relief units available for this purpose are Stegadons and Cold One Cavalry. They are relatively fast and hard hitting. Since Cold One Cavalry are good at entering the gate OR attacking an enemies unprotected rear, you should probably have a few cavalry models in your relief force given their versatility.

    Unless you get a very early relief force rolls, Saurus units are too slow. Carnosaurs are too expensive. Razordons and Swarms are too weak. Salamanders are useful only if you think your opponent is prone to failing panic checks (though a large enough pack with extra handlers could enter the gate and trigger an auto win giving them some versatility).

    Bastilodons, Troglodons, and Carnosaurs are designed around supporting infantry blocks to some extant. Since relief forces will be a small group, they won’t have much to support so would be a point sink for Siege Defenders.

    Relief forces don’t face starvation rolls but since every point you spend on your relief force arrives at least somewhat late, it may be a viable strategy to only buy a bare bones relief force (10 or 20 Skink Skirmishers) and put the rest of your points in less temperamental defenders.

    Note that you cannot trigger an auto-win by moving a relief force in by magical means, so you can’t use Walk Between Worlds to move a unit into the courtyard. You CAN use Walk Between Worlds to position a relief force one turn so they can have a straight shot to march through the gate on their NEXT turn.

    The Slann

    Without a Slann, you are toast unless the game is low points.

    Life is your best bet. It helps your units survive (and that’s priority one) and you can use Lifebloom to keep your characters and Kroxigor healthy.

    High Magic is good for its flexibility. It’s got a nice mix of buffs, a healing spell, and some nasty damaging spells. If you want to swap spells out with the lore attribute I’d pick up Life spells.

    Light is good. Your troops will be tightly clustered making the bubble buffs easy to use. Light also has a nice defensive motif going with it’s spells and it's exactly what you want.

    Shadow is good, most of your enemies will have penalties to their WS and I for scaling the walls so why not hex them down further? A centrally positioned Slann should have relatively little trouble hexing any and all enemy units. This is a good strategy if you are fielding more Sauri than Skinks.

    Death is good if you have Skink priests positioned to help you use your hero sniping abilities to their maximum potential. Also, a few Purple Suns will give the assaulting units something other than scaling the walls to think about. You don't have the defensive aspects though. You should up the number of Sauri because you are going to actually have to fight off attackers with this build rather than merely survive them.

    Fire is okay. It’s great for retaking a section that is lost given how useful for flaming attacks are when attacking buildings. Unfortunately there is relatively little to keep a section from being captured in the first place except for Flame Cage.

    Metal is okay. Metal works well with Skink based armies and most defending LM forces will lean heavily on Skinks. The problem is knights and other units especially vulnerable to Metalshifting make poor Siege Attackers so Metal’s true forte will likely go unused barring an army with very solid infantry like Warriors of Chaos.

    Heavens is okay. You can position Comets behind attacking enemy units. Even in the unlikely event they hit your units you are only out d6 Skinks while your opponents stand to lose much more. Chain Lightning can rip across the perimeter of your attacker’s forces and the buffs and the hexes stack with the attackers penalties for scaling the walls.

    A Jack of All Trades Slann with eight signature spells is probably not a good idea. You want more battlefield control than direct damage, so only Iceshard Blizzard, Wyssans Wildform, and Melkoth’s Miasma will need to be used consistently. Two of those spells can be cast from a level one Skink priest.

    Beast Slann are not a good idea. I don’t think you need any of the spells besides Wyssans and you can get that with a Skink Priest or High Slann.

    Siege Equipment

    Siege Defenders have far more options in equipment than attackers do, and only two of them are off-limits for Lizardmen. I’ll start in rough order of my preference.

    Flaming Ammunition may be a one use item but it is a bargain at 20 Cohort Skinks a pop. It doesn’t matter whether it comes from a cannon or a single Chameleon Skink. Flaming Ammunition is not only a quick way to take out war machines and battering rams, it is one of the few things that can destroy Siege Towers. Every unit with a missile weapon that is not in your relief force should probably be packing flaming ammunition.

    Hellgate is also a one use item, but a gate with a breath weapon is powerful. It’s also fairly cheap at 50 Cohort Skinks. You need all the help you can get defending your gate, so I recommend buying one of these.

    Sally Forths are handy. They may be one-shot items but like Undermines they are used in the prebattle phase. Each Sally Forth has a one in three chance of working rather than a one in six chance of working like their cousin the Undermine. It’s a good way to thin out the herd of artillery, towers, and battering rams. Make sure you target breaching items before you target not breaching items to get maximum use out of these. All else equal, it’s better to take out something pointed at the gate than to take out something pointed at a side wall.

    Cauldrons of Boiling Oil are fairly cheap ways to inflict some effecting shooting. The problem is these things have fairly short range. While it’s very hard for an attacker to avoid them altogether, a cunning foe will at least be able to move his units so you can only clip the corner with the template rather than hitting them dead center. These are a little risky. The less elite your opponent is, the better they become (if you are being massed with large numbers it’s impossible NOT to hit something).

    Witch’s Cauldron is tempting. Especially for a section with a Saurus unit in it. The cost for rolling a 1 is fairly low (and a Slann risks even less). The downside is you can’t choose which stat is boosted. You can use it over and over again, but I think 100 Cohort Skinks is a bit steep for an item that is so hit-or-miss. It’s great if you get an extra attack but pretty meaningless if you get an Initiative boost.

    Dwarf Brewhouse Tower Upgrades may seem out of character for the First Children of the Old Ones but they aren’t disallowed (and we can make up some other fluff justification for the same game effect like a healing well). It can only heal units in the tower but since you rotate depleted units in and fresh units out a Dwarf Brewhouse can help more than just the tower. Sadly it only heals d3 wounds which doesn’t mean a whole lot if you are relying on Skinks. For heartier units like Kroxigor and Saurus this a good boon though and will probably pay for itself.

    I tried a wizard’s tower my first defending Seige Battle. I figured Wind Blast, Ice Shard Blizzard, and Chain Lightning would be good but I didn’t care for the other Heavens spells so I could get the whole lore with a level one Skink. I realize one test doesn’t prove something, but I don’t think it’s a good idea. Here’s the downside: since you are probably going to have seven sections to defend and only three being attacked (maybe four) you are probably going to be swapping a lot of units around. That means your Skink Priest will likely have to leave the Wizards Tower. Also being outnumbered three to two means you are going to be wanting the volume of spells Slann can throw down and your Skink Priests will just slow you down. It’s got some additional value now that are Slann can’t become Lore Masters easily but Slann are even more likely to move around than Skinks. I may try four level one Wizards and four wizards towers just for the sheer novelty, but mighty Slann do not need such paltry toys.

    Warded Towers are cheap, but they only apply to towers (they provide MR). Unless you know your opponent is really packing tons of magic, these probably aren’t a good buy since an opponent with a small to medium amount of magic will just shoot at wall sections instead and bypass your warded towers.

    Sigmarite Shrine are allowed to any Forces of Order, not just the Empire (call it a Chotec Shrine and leave it at that). This upgrade means your opponents struck by units in the tower (with ranged or close combat attacks) have to re-roll successful ward saves. Unless you are fighting an army with lots of Ward Saves, this is not generally worth 100 Cohort Skinks. If you are fighting demons, put this Shrine on EVERY tower.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2018
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  2. T`hinker`er

    T`hinker`er Active Member

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    Excellent write up - hopefully this will come in handy in my campaign if I can continue to beat the Elves back from whence they came!
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  3. Warden

    Warden Tenth Spawning

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    Randomly came across this old thread and read the whole thing today. I love siege scenarios, I am curious if anyone has had the chance to play with these rules? They are much more thought out than the rules from the 6th edition army book (which are the only siege battle rules I have ever used) so I am considering getting the Blood in the Badlands book now, if nothing else just for ideas.

  4. Aginor

    Aginor Fifth Spawning Staff Member

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    HOLY COW! I will have to adapt those rules to AoS if the siege rules in the new GHB2017 fall short of my expectations (which I assume they do based on what I heard until now).
  5. Lord Agragax of Lunaxoatl

    Lord Agragax of Lunaxoatl Eleventh Spawning

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    The best thing about Blood in the Badlands siege rules is that you can also make up additional siege equipment if you wish (it says so in the book as I have a copy), and I have made some up for Lizardmen, including a Shrine of Chotec for attackers (fires a massive superlaser) and Tomb Warrior towers for defenders (summons Ethereal Saurus Warriors)
  6. Aginor

    Aginor Fifth Spawning Staff Member

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    So many possibilities.... I want a siege Bastiladon, a Sotek shrine summoning Jungle Swarms, and especially proper wall damage and such stuff.....
    I will try and do some of that stuff for AoS. Thread soon hopefully.
  7. Scalenex

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    I would be thrilled to see some Age of Sigmar Siege rules. Since my tiny gaming group is strongly divided between 8th edition and Age of Sigmar with a lone me bridging the divide, I would invest some time and money in a fortress if I could play it for both games.

    I don't see why you couldn't use most of same mechanics. About the only thing you need to change is probably the rule that scaling the walls halves the attackers WS since AoS doesn't have WS. Replace the attackers modifier with a flat penalty to hit.

    I actually drafted a couple of ideas. This also spurred me wanting to make stationary giant bows, but I think they should be a regular unit, not a siege equipment.

    Fun fact, since I figured Stegadons and Salamanders are dead weight as units but I still have the models, instead of battering rams, I use howdah-less Stegadons goaded by Skink handlers from Salamanders. The Handlers are basically wound counters on the battering ram and have no game effect.

    To keep the elegant simplicity of siege equipment, it should probably mostly be in increments of 100, 250, or 500 points.

    Defenders Siege Equipment

    Stationary Engine of the Gods (Tower Upgrade), 500 points: The tower operates as an engine of the gods when garrisoned with at least one living skink priest or Slann.

    Terradon Aviary (Tower Upgrade), 500 points: The whole fortress is a way station for terradon outriders. Terradons who have dropped their rocks may pick them up again by flying over a part of the fortress not controlled by the enemy to reload their rocks as long as the Aviary remains in control of the defenders. If the Aviary is captured by the enemy, the terradons freak out from having their eggs in danger. All terradons automatically lose the rocks they are carrying with no effect and need to make an immediate Panic test when the Aviary is captured, and then Hate any enemy unit garrisoning the tower (the Hate applies to the riders who feel some kinship with their flying mounts).

    I like the idea of a Terradon Aviary, but I don’t like the implementation here. Also, real world paleontologists generally believe Pterodactyls nested on the ground.

    Sacrificial Alter for Sotek (Tower Upgrade), 500 points: Defenders cause Fear to all attackers (they know what their fate will be if they lose). Defenders will not leave their sacred shrine lightly and gain Immune to Psychology.

    Poisonous Creepers (Wall Upgrade), 250 points: The wall section has thorny poisonous plants growing on them carefully cultivated with an eye towards defense. An attacking unit has to make a dangerous terrain test unless there is a breach, have a siege tower, are ethereal or Fly.

    Attackers Siege Equipment

    Recovery of Sacred Artifacts, Half of Attacker Points: The defenders are knowingly or unknowingly keeping stolen sacred artifacts behind their walls. All Lizardmen attackers Hate all members of the opposing forces.
  8. Warden

    Warden Tenth Spawning

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    Those are some really great ideas! I like the idea of a terradon aviary, great homage to the thunder lizard project. As much as it might not be historically accurate



    Thunder Lizard Terradons.jpg

    The Engine of the Gods on the wall would be a great way to use a tool not normally available outside of being mounted on top of a dinosaur. Maybe some solar engines too?

    For attacking equipment, I made my lizardmen battering ram:

    warden201708_battering ram repaint.jpg

    BUT I would love to see some attacking dinosaurs. I want to use some old brachiosaurus models in the future to make Lizardmen-themed siege towers (could also double as stegadons in a tabletop battle).


    Or use some Pachycephalosaurus as some living battering rams!

  9. Lizards of Renown

    Lizards of Renown Herald of Creation

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    Awesome. Will keep this in mind for future!
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