Thagrosh, The Messiah - Legion Epic Blighted Ogrun Warlock


thagrosh_messiah.jpg

Thagrosh is no longer ogrun. He has become Everblight’s true avatar. It is as though the dragon lurks just behind the top layer of his thoughts, a vast alien presence looking through his eyes and speaking with his tongue. Similarly, the draconic temper increasingly dominates Thagrosh’s mood. This fury is a brand of searing iron that ignites the pure dragon blood pumping through his veins, pushing him to crush and humiliate each foe he faces.

Statistics


Compared to his non-epic form, Thagrosh2 has gained 2 STR (putting him at 1 less than a Carnivean), 2 extra health points, and a large base. He has 1 less DEF and 1 more ARM than Thagrosh1, putting both stats in the "not too impressive" range. He remains among the slowest warlocks in the Legion, which means his beasts may have to not move their full SPD to let him stay up with them. His FURY is quite good, giving him a fairly impressive control radius. His warbeast points are the lowest in the game, but he does a lot to buff warbeasts, and he is practically a beast himself. He will draw a lot of fire from the enemy, and his survivability is not fantastic. You'll need to put some effort into keeping him safe if you want him to live.

Feat - Dragon Storm

It's a mini turn for beasts. After you have done everything all your beasts can advance and attack once. This can be great to finish off anything you didn't on the charge, with manifest destiny you usually don't have to worry about boosting specially against beasts. It's also a useful way to give your shredders extra threat range.

Weapons


  • Blight fire -Thagrosh is a dragon, what's a dragon without a breath? His breath is a long spray that can be used on infantry swarms - his melee attacks are much better so better stick to those.
    • Damage Type: Fire, Cold- It has 2 damage types, which means that anything which is immune to either one of them laughs this off. How irritating.
    • Continuous Fire- Anything that takes a hit catches fire. This is good fun against infantry and can be really annoying for squishy warcasters.
    • Critical: Freeze - If you get a crit, the target gets frozen. This means that they can be frozen and on fire at the same time, which is automatically hilarious. Very strong against marshalled warjacks becasue they can't shake it.
  • Rapture -This is the same weapon that Prime Thagrosh carried, but with Epic Thagrosh's better STR score this thing can hit like a Carnivean's bite.
    • Magical Weapon
    • Reach
    • Eruption of Ash - Still the same, when you box a model with this weapon, they explode into a 3"-wide cloud effect which deals a POW 12 Fire damage roll to enemies. This helps thin down swarms and boosts Thag's defence. Can be used to screen him from sight if used correctly
  • Claw - A second weapon with no special abilities. Still hits hard though, and puts the hurt on most enemies.

Special Abilities


  • Abomination -Apparently being the vessel for your glorious leader makes your own people fear you. Don't get him close to non fearless models or they may scamper away.
  • Athanc -Same as Thag1, when he's done leaching in the control phase, he can get 1 extra fury point if he has less than a full load. Useful in the late-game when things come down to attrition.
  • Blood spawn -Cool fluff ability, means once a game when he takes 5 or more points of damage he can spawn a lesser warbeast anywhere within 3 inches of him, warbeast can't activate this turn. Basically it allows him to transfer two more attacks against him keeping him alive for a bit longer.
  • Flight - Yes he can use those wings, he can fly over terrain, enemy and friendly models alike but if you fly over enemies they get a free strike. Its very nice for positioning.

Spells

  • Dragon's Blood - A low cost upkeep spell that gives a target FF non-warlock model/unit an ARM bonus. When the affected model is disabled by a melee attack you can roll a d6; on a roll of a 5 or 6 the enemy attacker suffers one point of damage. This spell is generally best used on a Scythean or a Carnivean and stacked with Spiny growth but you can also put it on a unit of Legionnaires and their armour gets high enough that they might actually survive an attack. You also gain the ability to do damage to an enemy unit with the deaths of cheap models that have vengeance. With Farilorand Dragons Blood they can actually become quite difficult to remove but much more expensive.
  • Flesh Eater - Average cost offensive spell; when it boxes a living enemy model, remove that model from play, then you can heal the caster or a living warbeast in its battlegroup and CTRL area for d3 points of damage. Not a widely used spell, since you can just heal for 3 with the same cost as the spell. Only really useful if you want to attack an Incorporeal model at range.
  • Manifest Destiny - Moderately high-cost spell that gives models in the caster's BG an additional die to melee attack/damage rolls while within the caster's CTRL area, but you must discard the lowest die of each roll. His signature spell, it makes Legion warbeasts, shredders in particular much much more effective.
  • Scourge - An expensive offensive spell with a medium AOE that inflicts Knockdown on models underneath the template. Great for setting up a charge, but it drains more than half of Thag's fury. If he casts both this and Manifest Destiny, that's all his fury points drained, so he can't afford to upkeep anything.
  • Unnatural Aggression - Upkeep spell you cast on a target friendly non-trooper Faction model. If the affected model suffered damage on your opponent's last turn, this model may make a full advance toward (hint; not directly toward) the nearest enemy model during your next Maintenance Phase. A useful spell for increasing threat ranges as it will still trigger off transfers from your warlock. Somewhat tricky to use because you have to move to the nearest enemy. Is used more as deterrent against stray shots targeting your warlock or the target of this Spell.

Thoughts on Thagrosh


Like his non epic version, Epic Thagrosh is fragile and even more so than before. ARM 17 or even ARM 19 with the Spiny Growth animus, won't save you from any assassination runs and his DEF is nothing to write home about. Since he is also on a large base it is very difficult to screen him. One popular possibility is to position two to three cheap infantry models (for example Legionnaires) before him, whack them with Rupture and stay behind your own personal clouds for the round that even damage enemys that run into them. Just use the range of the weapon or you will be standing inside the cloud and be visible. That said it's generally worth to at least prevent him from being charged. His spells make him quite a good beast support warlock - one who when needed can hit as hard as any heavy beast himself, just be aware of how squishy he is.

Warbeasts to consider:

He is often played with Shredder spam. On his feat turn shredders can go rabid and then run 16" then advance another 8" with the feat move and then make an attack rolling 4 dice to hit and 4 dice damage discarding the lowest die for each roll. Yep thats right: 24" pathfinding minirockets. This allows you to hem a player in before they contest an objective and the shredders can do a lot of damage.

While Harriers dont offer Thagrosh much (he should have no hitting problems with manifest destiny) Stingers can be worth a look. With Poison on the charge and Manifest Destiny they will hurt living models even more than shredders.

Thagrosh can do with about every heavy melee warbeast the Legion has. The Carnivean with Dragons Blood and Spiny Growth is the most durable thing you can field but lacks the threat range of the Scythean which is a cheaper allround eliminator.

The Seraph can really help Thagrosh offset his low speed with Slipstream.

The Naga Nightlurkers animus can help with incorporal and "buffed to the teeth" models.

The Raek is a cheap melee beast that can dish out serious damage with manifest destiny. But the question is why take it when you can just take 2 shredders instead? The Parry animus combined with flight can produce some really nasty surprises for your enemy there.

Units:
The Legionnaires really stand out here - without UA as cheap meatshield for Thagrosh and improvised smokescreen or with Farilor and the Dragons Blood upkeep as nasty ARM 22 roadblock. Always include a Spawning Vessel when fielding Legionnaires because you can recycle the casualties directly for new lesser warbeasts.

The Blackfrost Shard can help with incorporal models and damage focus.

Solos:

The Succubus can keep up one of his upkeeps (every point of fury helps kill more stuff) and cast for example Spiny Growth for free. Be carefu<l with Abomination

Always take some additional beast support. Shepherds and Forsaken are essential to keep your beast heavy army going.

One final comment:
Yes, Shredders are fun but don't overdo it. You can play Epic Thagrosh and 19 Shredders on a 35 point game (thats a massive 250 hitpoints...) and i encourage you to try it some time. But PLEASE don't go to a tournament with that list. A good opponent with a balanced list won't be so overrun by those shredders as you might think - quite the contrary. They wont be doing anything against models beyond ARM 20 and they will be eating each other in the turn following the feat (those that are left after your oppenent has slain the others)

Tier List


Tier 1: All non-character warbeasts, Typhon, Grotesques, Legionnaires, Incubi, Forsaken, Nyss Sorcress (November 2010 Errata adds the Shepherd).
Benefit: FA of Legionnaires becomes U and Flying warrior models gain Advanced Deploy

Tier 2: At least one sorceress
Benefit: You get a bonus on your deployment roll

Tier 3: At least two units of Legionnaires
Benefit: They become faster on the first turn

Tier 4: At least two heavies
Benefit: For every two heavies, add in a shepherd (the November 2010 Errata made this possible, as otherwise the benefit would nullify the entire Tier list).

This seems to me to be one of the weaker tier lists, with many restrictions and almost no benefit. While a single unit Legionnaires is good enough for his ARM buff a second unit is just points wasted that could be invested in beasts. The Tier 2 bonus is solid: A quite good 4 point Solo for +1 to the starting roll is ok.