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| Doctor Stygius |
Mark IV Status: Limbo - This model has not (yet) been updated with Mk IV rules, as of 2022.11. Privateer Press have promised it will get updated ... eventually.
An apple a day might keep the doctor away in the real world, but in a post-apocalyptic Iron Kingdoms, it’ll take some seriously heavy firepower to avoid a visit from Dr. Stygius! Suffer a wound while he’s on your crew, and this sinister Cephalyx has a suite of tools to stitch, saw, or scrape away your ails and keep you in the action. But if you’re looting for the other team, don’t forget your tinfoil hat or you may find Stygius psychically scrambling your cerebellum into a savory sauce!”
- 1 Basic Info
- 2 Thoughts on Doctor Stygius
- 3 Other
Riot Quest - Although this model has rules which allow it to be played in Warmachine and Hordes, it was primarily designed for the Riot Quest boardgame. RQ is set in an alternate and/or future timeline where the Infernals won the war. Some of the RQ models are slightly more goofy than their WMH equivalents.
- Partisan [ Cryx ] - When included in a Cryx army, this model/unit is a Cryx model/unit instead of a Mercenary model/unit.
Selective - This model can be included in a Mercenary army only if the army is made using a Cephalyx theme force.
Attached - Before the start of the game, attach this model to a friendly Faction warcaster for the rest of the game. Each Faction warcaster can have only one model/unit attached to it.
- Anatomical Precision - When this model's melee damage roll fails to exceed the ARM of the living model hit, that model suffers 1 damage point. A model disabled by a melee attack made by this model cannot make a Tough roll.
- Heal  (★ Action) - RNG B2B. Target friendly living Faction model. If the model is in range, remove 5 damage points from it.
- Magic Ability [ 7 ] - This model can cast spells. Normally this uses up the model's Combat Action and as such is limited to one spell per activation, but exceptions do exist.
- Sacrificial Pawn [ Drudge ] - When this model is directly hit by an enemy ranged attack, you can have one friendly, non-incorporeal Drudge model within 3" of it directly hit instead. That model is automatically hit and suffers all damage and effects. The Sacrificial Pawn special rule can only trigger once per attack roll.
|Prosthetic Manipulators (×2)|
| Get the Juices Flowing
|Add 1 focus point to each friendly Monstrosity model currently within 5" of this model.|
|Spell Slave||(★ Action) or (★ Attack)||Stats vary every time|
This model must be in its warcaster/warlock's control range to make the Spell Slave special action. When it does, it casts one of the spells on its warlock/warcaster's card with a COST of 3 or less. This model cannot cast upkeep spells or spells with a RNG of SELF or CTRL. When casting an offensive spell, Spell Slave is a magic attack. Use this model's Magic Ability score when making magic attack rolls.
- As a Mercenary solo, Doctor Stygius can go in every Cryx theme but he uses your "Up to one Mercanry solo" slot (most of the time).
- Black Industries. When taken in this theme, he doesn't use your Merc slot.
- Dark Host
- The Ghost Fleet
- Scourge of the Broken Coast. When taken in this theme, he doesn't use your Merc slot.
Thoughts on Doctor Stygius
Doctor Stygius in a nutshell
He's a support solo with the ever-useful Spell Slave ability and a situationally useful Heal. He can also be a surprise in combat, bringing two attacks with an anti-tough, auto-damage, auto-stationary effect vs living models.
Within Cryx this guy single-handedly makes the Skarlock Thrall redundant, except for the very rare case that you're playing in Dark Host and you want to spend your Mercenary solo slot on someone else.
Playing in the Operating Theater Mercenary theme force is where Stygius truly shines. Monstrosities don't get focus when powering up like 'jacks do, and since they keep focus between rounds being able to hand out free focus to multiple a turn is very powerful. Additionally, Operating Theater armies are basically always going to have drudges around for Stygius to Sac-Pawn onto since Thexus likes having a ton of them and Cyphon wants at least one unit of them nearby to burn for longer spell ranges.
Combos & Synergies - Cryx
- Skarre1 likes him as an upgrade to a Skarlock Thrall to do the same job - cast her Ritual Sacrifice spell each turn - plus Stygius also brings the Heal for her post-feat.
- Stygius can cast Ritual Sacrifice on itself. So it plus three Scrap Thralls gets you 4 turns of the spell at a very low cost.
- Deneghra1 likes a Spell Slave to cast Ghost Walk, and (very occasionaly) Venom. Arguably she'd prefer the Withershadow Combine as her spell slave because they can also upkeep a spell, but then again her upkeep spells are so deadly that you often don't need to upkeep them.
- Scaverous likes a Spell Slave to cast an extra Telekinesis every turn. He definitely would prefer the Withershadow Combine (for various reasons) but they're only allowed in one theme, so Scaverous takes Stygius whenever the WSC are absent.
Combos & Synergies - Cephalyx
- Being able to heal a guaranteed 5 boxes in one activation is amazing for Monstrosities. Since you get to choose which boxes get healed, as long as a Monstrosity has a single unmarked damage box Stygius is guaranteed to be able to heal one damage box off each crippled system with two points of healing to spare. You tend to beat up your own Monstrosities as the game goes on, so having a consistent way to stitch them back up again in a pinch if you overdo it is very useful.
Exulon Thexus appreciates having access to a Spell Slave, if only for the potential for a fifth cast of Telekinesis each turn. Sadly, many of the spells Thexus has access to are not able to be cast with Spell Slave. Deceleration and Psycho Surgery require the caster to have a control range and Rampager is too expensive. Thexus often runs only a few Monstrosities, but letting Stygius deal with loading them up early can leave him more free to toss out a bit more Telekinesis action to get the board set up just how he wants it. Alternatively, Thexus has no upkeeps to put out early on so on the top of turn one he can dump 5 focus across 3 Monstrosities, have Stygius juice them all up, and use his remaining 3 focus to cast Deceleration if the opponent has any ranged threats long enough to already be taking pot-shots at your army. Since Monstrosities don't lose focus between turns, you are now just one focus short of having all three fully-loaded and ready to go when the enemy gets closer without having to put any damage on them. If you run them next turn you can have Stygius juice them again to top them back off, and after that point you should be close enough to be running/charging for free due to Aggressive Reaction.
Of the spells Stygius can cast, Influence and Hex Blast are situationally useful while Telekinesis is the good stuff. Thexus already likes to handle your opponent's models nearly as much as they do and having the ability to turn yet another one of your opponent's models around is just that much more oppressive. Generally, if you can't find a use for Telekinesis in any given situation then you just aren't thinking creatively enough.
Get the Juices Flowing is huge for Cognifex Cyphon. Cyphon is a FOCUS 7 battlegroup caster that wants to take at least 4-5 Monstrosities, but has no way to power them other than giving them his focus or having his Cephalyx models deal damage to them. Cyphon lacks the Psycho Surgery spell Thexus has and his feat deals 6 damage to each of his Monstrosities, so the chip damage of cutting them for focus can add up. With Stygius in the center of a group of five Monstrosities he is able to generate five free focus each turn, focus that you normally would have to either take from Cyphon or dedicate five Cephalyx models and a bunch of HP to get.
- Empathic Overload automatically hitting friendly models means that Stygius not being able to boost his magic attack roll doesn't matter, letting you run a drudge forward to lock the AoE onto a group of slippery lower-armor infantry. With Cyphon also casting it on other drudges, this leads to potentially 3 auto-hitting POW 12 4" AoE templates being dropped in a single turn.
- Gallows being cast from another vector is very potent, especially given that Cyphon doesn't have the ability to channel spells like Thexus does. Stygius can get in position and Gallows a target out from behind an obstructing model to open them up for a 15" range Gallows or two from Cyphon. That's potentially 18" of forced movement, that can be followed up by a Subduer with SPD 8 on feat turn with a 6" range net gun that drags the target into base-to-base contact for a ridiculous (and definitely unrealistically best-case) ~32" threat range Subduer. Assuming average distance rolls and that the spells all hit, which they have a good chance of doing on a lower DEF target like a Heavy Warjack, that's still a silly ~16" of forced movement when including the Subduer's net-gun.
- Breath Stealer is pretty simple, Monstrosities aren't the most accurate beatsticks and Breath Stealer helps to alleviate this issue. Because Breath Stealer is a one-round debuff and not an upkeep it is still able to be cast with Spell Slave and can be put on multiple targets at once if Cyphon is also casting it. This is slightly less appealing to Spell Slave than other spells might be since you generally will want to put it on high-DEF targets, and despite being Magic Ability 7 Stygius still can't boost to hit so he won't be landing it as consistently as Cyphon could.
Drawbacks & Downsides
- Neither his DEF or ARM is quite good enough to rely on (as is typical for Cephalyx). Instead he has Stealth and Sac Pawn ... but both of these can be worked around.
- If you stand close enough to a Drudge to Sac-Pawn an attack (that ignores Stealth) to the Drudge, then you are close enough for something that targets the Drudge to bounce to you (stuff like Electro Leap, sprays, etc).
- Get the Juices Flowing does not have a very large range, and taking the most advantage of it will require you to bunch up your Monstrosities pretty close together.
- With a few Monstrosities you can bunch up for focus efficiency but then you compromise on board presence.
- With a lot of them (as in, you are playing Cognifex Cyphon) then trying to keep all those large bases near Stygius is going to really hamper your movement, plus you're still compromising board presence.
- You may have to accept that a more spread out deployment can be more valuable than a few free focus over the course of the game.
- He is ok in melee vs living, but terrible vs non-living.
Tricks & Tips
- Anatomical Precision stacks with Anaesthesia, meaning he will always cause a living model to go stationary even if you roll snake eyes for damage. You still need to hit, though.
- Use your other Cephalyx with Anatomical Precision to poke the Monstrosities for focus on turn 1 only, and have Stygius Juice them on turn 1 and turn 2. When it comes time for the Monstrosities to activate on turn 2, they'll be at max 3 focus without you needing to allocate anything from your caster.
- Since he has two attacks, you can use him to put 2 focus on a single Monstrosity ... but you probably don't want to because that'll make the Monstrosity stationary. It is much better to use Juices and give a single focus to multiple Monstrosities.
- The one exception is if you get first turn and you want to spread your Monstrorisites out further than Juices can cover. In this case, leave one Monstrosity within 7" of Stygius and have him hit it twice. The stationary effect will expire at the start of your next turn, and your opponent is unlikely to get many attacks into your stationary Monstrosity this early in the game.
- Released 2020.01
Other Faction models
|Cryx Index (Edit)|
|Battlegroup & Similar|
Agathia - Aiakos2 - Asphyxious1 - Asphyxious2 - Asphyxious3 - Coven - Deathjack2 - Deneghra1 - Deneghra2 - Deneghra3 - Goreshade1 - Goreshade2 - Goreshade3 - Mortenebra1 - Mortenebra2 - Rahera - Scaverous - Skarre1 - Skarre2 - Skarre3 - Sturgis2 - Terminus - Venethrax
|Other Warjack Controllers|
|Colossal||Kraken - Sepulcher|
|Units, Solos, Battle Engines, & Structures|
Asphyxious4 - Bane Knights - Bane Riders - Bane Warriors - Bile Thralls - BO Boarding Party - BO Ironmongers - BO Smog Belchers - Blackbane's Ghost Raiders - Bloodgorgers - Marauders - Carrion Thralls - Cephalyx Drudges - Cephalyx Overlords - Mechanithralls - Necrosurgeon - Revenant Cannon - Revenant Crew - Satyxis Gunslingers - Satyxis Blood Witches - Satyxis Raiders - Scharde Dirge Seers - Scharde Pirates - Soulhunters - The Devil's Shadow Mutineers - The Withershadow Combine
Aiakos1 - Agrimony - Axiara - Bane Lord Tartarus - Bloat Thrall - BTO Mobius - Captain Rengrave - Darragh Wrathe - Doctor Stygius - Deneghra0 - Gerlak - Hellslinger - Iron Lich Overseer - Machine Wraith - Master Gurglepox - Misery Cage - Necrotech - Ol' Grim - Pistol Wraith - Satyxis Blood Priestess - Satyxis Raider Captain - Scrap Thrall - Skarlock Thrall - Severa Blacktide - Soul Trapper - Warwitch Siren
|Battle Engines & Structures||Wraith Engine|
|Black Industries - Dark Host - The Ghost Fleet - Scourge of the Broken Coast|
|Refer to Who Works for Whom and/or Category: Cryx Mercenary|
|This index was last updated: 2021.11|
|Which Faction am I?
Partisans & Theme Forces (Edit)
From here down, the terms Sacrificial Pawn, Grim Salvation, and Sucker! are interchangeable
Who does the casting
When/how does a Spell Slave cast
What spells can they choose to cast
How can they boost the spell