Theme - Sons of the Tempest

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Cygnar Logo.jpg Theme - Sons of the Tempest

Cygnar Theme Force
Flame in the Darkness - Gravediggers - Heavy Metal - Sons of the Tempest - Storm Division

Mobile and versatile, the Arcane Tempest are called upon to deal with situations beyond the capacity of standard military forces, particularly arcane threats that are warded against conventional firepower. Coordinated by experienced gun mages to fight in conjunction with traditional battlegroups, these strike teams can operate in any theater of war. As their ranked guns tear apart the enemy with fusillades of deadly firepower, lone marksmen pick off high-priority targets with speed and accuracy.

Theme Rules

Theme Restrictions

An army made using the Sons of the Tempest theme force can include only the following Cygnar models:

  • This army can also include one Mercenary solo and one Mercenary unit that will work for Cygnar.
    • These models/units can be included even if they have the Partisan [Cygnar] rule.
    • Mercenary units can have attachments, but not a Ranking Officer.

Full model list

The models allowed in Sons of the Tempest are:   [Show/Hide]

This list was last updated: 2020.02   (Edit)


  • All Cygnar warcasters


  • All non-character warjacks
  • Ace
  • Other character warjacks can be taken, but only if they have a bond and they're in their bonded model's battlegroup.




  • Up to one unit
  • Up to one solo

Requisition Points

You can spend each Requisition Point on either:

  • One Cygnar CA
  • One small- or medium-based Cygnar solo

Theme Bonuses

  1. Arcane Tempest Gun Mage & Black 13th Strike Force units in this army gain Pistoleer.
    Pistoleer - Ranged attack damage rolls made by this model targeting a model in melee with this model are boosted.
  2. Warcasters in this army can upkeep spells on Arcane Tempest model/units without spending focus.
    This used to apply to say "models in this army" so that Caine0 could benefit, but it no longer does. This may be a typo in the spoiler, though.

Recent Changes

2019.07 Theme Remix

  • Game-wide Remix changes
  • Ace added to the list of allowed models.
  • Murdoch removed from the list of allowed models.
  • Freebie models stayed pretty much the same
  • (Maybe) Caine0 no longer gets free upkeeps.

Thoughts on Sons of the Tempest

Recent Change icon.png

Recent Errata - This article needs updating
The "Basic Info" section has been updated to match a recent errata/spoiler, but the "Thoughts On" section hasn't been brushed up yet.
If you play this Faction, please delete the old irrelevant info and then delete this warning.

See also Category: Recent Change and Category: Recent Release.

Sons of the Tempest in a nutshell

Do you want Gun Mages? Because this is how you get Gun Mages. This theme offers:

  • some nice resource management benefits with free upkeeps on your models
  • plus it mitigates the greatest weakness of the Gun Mages, namely that they could do next to nothing with high-ARM targets

Beside your in-faction opportunities, you can take dedicated ARM-breaking units, like the Horgenhold Forge Guard to deal with those pesky jacks. This list's main selling point that it fares well against infantry-heavy themes. Also, 99% of your non-battlegroup shots are magical, so Incorporeal models will have a hard time locking you out of scenarios, and you are also nearly unaffected by tricks which disallow non-magical shooting attacks (Wind Wall, hymns from the Choir, Vindictus' feat, etc).

Theme Weaknesses

Despite various changes, Sons of the Tempest is mostly likely the weakest of Cygnar's themes. Some of this is down to the choices available, some due to ranged-hate becoming increasingly common in meta-defining lists.

Strong counters

Not too much of a surprise, but a bunch of gun-toting warrior-mages are particularly sensitive to anti-shooting techs. Feats from Zerkova1, cheap Shield Guards, Sacrificial Pawn, or spells like Swamp Pit and Countermeasure can severely decrease your attack capabilities.

Upkeep dependence can leave you exposed to upkeep hate (Purgation, Purification, Dispel, etc).

POW 10s galore

No hard hitting infantry outside of the Merc options.

Victim stat troops

Overall, your units are pretty squishy. Anything that bypasses high DEF will hurt you a lot. AoE damage and AoEs that apply continuous effects are very effective against the low ARM Gun Mages.

Terrain mitigation

Apart from the Black 13th and the Tempest Blazers your units may struggle with difficult terrain.

Balanced lists are hard

If you overload on jacks and/or solos you will find yourself struggling on scenario. If you don't utilize many solos, that goes against the main reason for using this theme. You have to find the exact right balance between solos, jack and units.

Low requisition points The most expensive models allowed as requisition points cost 5 points each - with some themes allowing up to 7 points per model from their requisition options.

List Building Tips

There are two main ways to look at this theme - all in on Gun Mages or cherry-pick the good bits (typically the solos and Black 13th). With a lot of gun mages, you need to be mindful of the fact that they are not great at playing attrition or a strong scenario game because they die too quickly. You will need some resilient models such as melee warjacks or throwaway pieces such as Thralls offered by Alexia1 or Alexia2.

About the units

  • Do not underestimate the power of Pistoleer shots when in melee, especially against Shield Walled / Wall of Steel units. If you can push away enemy unit members, use the Thunderbolt round. The push triggered on a hit, so then you'd roll 3D6 for damage and the target now won't receive the +4/+2 ARM. If you can't move them (whether due to immunity for pushes, or simply by placement), use the Critical Brutal shot for the extra damage die.
  • The B13 are the hands down best unit in the theme and should be in any Sons list, even if they are the only unit you take. They are quite devastating with Brutal Damage shots, dealing an average of 24 points of damage during a gunfight.
  • Tempest Blazers do not benefit from Pistoleer (not being an "Arcane Tempest Gun Mage" unit), but are extremely fast and can use use electro-leap shots to deal damage further into the back lines. Don't forget to reposition back out of harm's way! Furthermore, since they are going to be your fastest unit, they are the best candidates to capture or contest distant zones, which the theme otherwise struggles with.
  • Field Mechaniks can be extremely vital for your lists as a cheap throw away unit to hold down zones with. They are SPD 6 and Def 14, so they have a reasonable chance of being annoying at least. Occasional repairs are nice too.

About the Solos

The average Sons of the Tempest list will be very solo heavy. This is because the available units are not bad, but they are not amazing either, while pretty much all the solos in the theme are outstanding. That being said, The Black 13 is easily the best unit out of the bunch and should be in every list. After that you should spice it up with either Blazers and/or normal Gun Mages and then take as many solos as possible.

  • Falk brings a crucial damage buff into this theme. If you just go for a single free card, you probably want to consider him, or Caine0.

Warjacks in Sons

Speaking of jacks, it cannot be stressed enough how much this theme can do for them damage-wise. This is mainly due to the presence of Bastian Falk, the center-piece of any Sons list, who can buff magical damage output tremendously. "How?" You may ask, given that Rune Marked only works for magic weapons? Well there's a couple ways to make your jacks weapons magical, namely:

  • Marshalling the 'jack with a Gun Mage Officer. The Rune Shot drive makes the damage magical and coupled with the order to take aim brings you to +4 damage.
  • Empowering a 'jack with Strangewayes makes the 'jack's attacks magical.
  • Explosivo from Siege1 makes the damage magical and applies a small magical AOE.
  • Caine1's field marshal.

Falk's damage buff also stacks with all other damage buffs available to you, such as Kiss of Lyliss and Death Shroud. Caine0 can also put Fire for effect on a jack, which further ups their damage potential.

Naturally, the theme favours ranged jacks (Just don't forget the proviso in the introduction) :

  • The Cyclone is the ideal jack for the Officers to marshal. With Take Aim its two guns are already effectively POW 14 with ROF d3 on both of it's guns, and that doesn't even account for any other buff you might bring. They can also lay down Covering Fire, which brings a control aspect to the theme. Alternatively you can place the Covering Fire behind the enemy and use the Thunderbolt shots of your mages to push enemy models into it.
  • The Charger is a great jack for Siege1 since he wants as many boosted damage rolls he can get during his feat.
  • The Minuteman are also great for Siege, since they just evaporate infantry with Flack Field under his feat. They also bring two POW 14 guns (which can theoretically go up to POW 20 in his theme) and have two hands to use throw power attacks.
  • The Hunter and their long arm cannon can be seriously threaten heavies with all the damage buffs. Under Take Aim and Falk, he sports a Pow 10 armour piercing gun.
  • The Sentinel is a cheap shield guard that can protect your many solos.
  • The Centurion is niche choice that only shines under Kraye. He grants them reposition so they can take control of scenario and hold the enemy off with Polarity Field. Ragman, Aiyana, Falk and Strangeways make sure they hit hard.

Starting a 25 point force

If you're still stuck for ideas, try this. It's relatively newbie friendly.

Casters - The Most Wanted

Captain Jeremiah Kraye

He actually forgoes most of the Gun Mage stuff in the theme and opts for a repositioning, countermeasure-d polarity field with Centurions. Strangeways then hands out magical damage, so you got yourself a 6 point damage swing among Falk, Ragman and Aiyana. He typically likes the solos and Black 13th for their ability to ignore stealth and easily apply his feat.


Siege offers multiple tools that iron out their weaknesses. Foxhole is superb for your squishy infantry to hang out in, his feat really ups their damage and becomes outright frightening with Pistoleer shots and Tempest Blazer can really exploit the possibilities of the Breach feat with their Brutal Damage shots. If you add in Fire for Effect from Caine0 on his units or for his Ground pounder and you got a list with crazy damage potential. Additionally you can upkeep Explosivo on a jack so it gains the damage buff from Falk.


Deadeye is the Crit Fishing spell for Gun Mages, whether for brutal damage, or Thunderbolt. Temporal Barrier is an universal RAT fixer, enabling crit shots to happen all the more reliably.


Preventing AOE's from landing on gun mages solves the easiest way for them to die. And she works very well with a ATGM Bonded Jack, as two Sniped Defender rounds are better than one.

Casters - Also ran


A free Snipe leaves you more room for other attack types, and Dauntless Resolve is, again, another way to have your Mages not die to stray blasts... hopefully.


The same as with Maddox, save that his feat is a bit more useful to them, than Maddox's +3 STR.


Bullet Dodger rewards you with highly elusive mages, especially with her feat. Being mainly a battlegroup caster however, this will not be the first theme you'll be looking for.


Siege2 brings some nice tools to the gun mage party.

  • With a lower number of models, you can actually have space to trigger Hallowed Avenger effectively without getting jammed up.
  • High Ground tips their DEF into the irritating category.
  • His feat improves their DEF and gives them blast immunity which Gun Mages absolutely love. The 3" move also gives them a nice threat extension or reposition depending on what you have in mind.

But what about Caine?

Despite being a Arcane Tempest member in the fluff, none of Caine's iterations work particularly well with Sons (he also isn't an Arcane Tempest model for some reason, so he cannot upkeep for free on himself). Yes, free upkeeps are nice, but none of them really shore up the problems the theme has. Caine1 wants to kill lots of infantry on his feat turn, but killing infantry is not a problem Gun Mages have. Caine2 wants to go for an assassination run and while Shadow Fire (which he can also get from Ace in any theme) from the Captain Adepts and Falk's +2 damage from Rune Marked helps with that, the synergies end there. Generally speaking the first two Caines rely on their personal contribution to the battle and have little support to spare. As such they are looking for independent infantry that make the most out of their very limited support; something that describes the Gravediggers theme perfectly, but not Sons of the Tempest. Caine3 flat out just wants to maximize on his battlegroup to start a big synergy chain on feat turn, and for big battle groups there's Heavy Metal. Also he prevents you from taking the Black 13, which is the hands down best unit in the theme.



  • Released 2017.02
  • In Mk2 "Sons of the Tempest" was the name of Caine1's theme list.

Other Cygnar models

Cygnar Logo.jpg       Cygnar Index       (Edit)
Battlegroup & Similar
Warcasters Caine1 - Caine2 - Caine3 - Constance - Darius - Haley1 - Haley2 - Haley3 - Jakes2 - Kraye - Maddox - Nemo1 - Nemo2 - Nemo3 - Sloan - Stryker1 - Stryker2 - Stryker3 - Siege1 - Siege2 - Sturgis1
Warcaster attachments Squire (Cygnar) - Madelyn Corbeau (Merc) - Reinholdt (Merc) - Wyshnalyrr (Merc)
Other Warjack Controllers

Battlegroup Controllers: Caine0 - Nemo4 - Jakes1 - Journeyman - T. Warcaster Lieutenant
'Jack Marshals: Runewood - Strangewayes - Anson Hitch - Stormblade Captain - T. Master Gunner - Gun Mage CA - Stormblade CA - Sword Knights CA

Light Charger - Firefly - Grenadier - Hunter - Lancer - Minuteman - Sentinel
Ace - Thorn
Heavy Avenger - Centurion - Cyclone - Defender - Hammersmith - Ironclad - Reliant - Stormclad
Brickhouse - Dynamo - Gallant - Ol' Rowdy - Thunderhead - Triumph
Colossal Stormwall - Hurricane
Units, Solos, Battle Engines, & Structures

Arcane Tempest Gun Mages - Black 13th Gun Mage Strike Team - Field Mechaniks - Legion of Lost Souls - Long Gunner Infantry - OoI Resolutes - OoI Vigilants - Precursor Knights - Rangers - Silver Line Stormguard - Storm Lances - Stormblades - Stormguard - Stormsmith Grenadiers - Storm Tower - Sword Knights - Tempest Blazers - Tr Cannon Crew - Tr Chain Gun Crew - Tr Commandos - Tr Express Team - Tr Long Gunners - Tr Infantry - Tr Mechaniks
Special CA : Captain Jonas Murdoch (Mercenary unit) - Special WA: Morrowan Battle Priest (any unit)


Arcane Tempest Rifleman - Archduke Runewood - Captain Arlan Strangewayes - Captain Maxwell Finn - Commander Anson Hitch - Grand Master Gabriel Throne - Glyn Cormier, Illuminated One - Gun Mage Captain Adept - Journeyman Lieutenant Allister Caine - Journeyman Warcaster - Harlan Versh, Illuminated One - Lieutenant Allison Jakes - Lieutenant Bastian Falk - Lieutenant Gwen Keller - Major Katherine Laddermore - Major Harrison Gibbs - Morrowan Archon - Savio Montero Acosta - Sir Dreyfus the Storm Knight - Squire - Stormblade Captain - Stormcallers - Tr Buster - Tr Master Gunner - Tr Patrol Dog - Tr Warcaster Lieutenant - Viktor Pendrake

Battle Engines & Structures

Nemo4 - Storm Strider - Trencher Blockhouse

Theme Forces
Flame in the Darkness - Gravediggers - Heavy Metal - Sons of the Tempest - Storm Division
Refer to Who Works for Whom and/or Category: Cygnar Mercenary
This index was last updated: 2020.02

Rules Clarifications

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Rules Clarification : Pistoleer      (Edit)

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Rules Clarification: Theme Forces     (Edit)

Themes that change a model's Faction   [Show/Hide]
  • Many themes swap which Faction a model counts as. They're slightly inconsistent with how exactly this is worded. Despite this inconsistency - whenever a model is considered a different faction to normal, it will not be its original faction. (Infernal Ruling)
For instance Lukas stops being a Crucible Guard model when taken in an Infernal army, and as a consequence he cannot take Toros or Vanguards in Infernals. (Infernal Ruling)
Rerolling the starting roll   [Show/Hide]
  • You cannot use the theme benefit to reroll if it is a draw. Instead both players reroll until there is a loser, and then the loser can use their reroll benefit (if they have it). (Infernal Ruling)
  • If both players have a reroll, first the original loser uses their reroll.
    • If the original loser still loses, fine.
    • If the original loser now wins, the other player can use their reroll.
    • If it is now a draw, both players reroll until there is a loser. Then the player that hasn't used their theme benefit reroll can still use it, if they want.
Warjacks/Warbeasts with bonds   [Show/Hide]
  • A warjack/warbeast with a bond can always be included in a theme force, whether or not they're in the list of allowed models, but only if they're controlled by that bonded model.
  • This applies even if that bonded model isn't a full warcaster/warlock (changed as of 2018.06).
Including Mercenaries   [Show/Hide]

Number of Mercenaries

  • If your "up to one Merc" ...
    • ... can take warbeasts/warjacks, then you can add warbeast(s)/warjack(s) (without exceeding your "up to one" allowance)
    • ... comes with a Companion model, then you'll get that Companion (without exceeding your "up to one" allowance)
  • There is a bug in Warroom that allows you to not only take one Merc solo/unit, but the entire FA of that Merc solo/unit. It's a bug.

Mercenaries and Ranking Officers

  • Adding a Ranking Officer to a Merc unit doesn't increase the number of Merc units you can take.


  • See also the section on Partisans
Including Partisan Mercenaries   [Show/Hide]

Partisans & Theme Forces (Edit)

  • Since Partisans are Mercenary/Minion models, there are two ways you can add them to a theme force:
    1. If they are on the list of allowed models, then you can take as many as you want, plus another Mercenary unit/solo.(Infernal Ruling)
      They can be explicitly allowed (for example: Cephalyx in Black Industries or Kayazy in Jaws of the Wolf).
      They can be implicitly allowed (for example Scourge of the Broken Coast allows "living Cryx models" and Partisan Cephalyx fit that criteria). (Infernal Ruling)
    2. If the Partisan isn't on the list of allowed models, it does use up your "Up to one mercenary" slot, and you can only take one.
  • Whether you used option 1 or 2 above, once they're in your theme force they count as a Faction model and so:
    • They can be taken as a Requistion Option (if they fit the Requistion description).
    For example Eiryss1 can be taken as a free solo in the Legion of Dawn theme. (Infernal Ruling)
    • They will get any theme benefit that they fit the description for.
    For example Storm Division gives all Cygnar models Immunity Electricity, so Partisan Mercs in that theme get immunity too.
    For example Nemo4's Mechaniks get Reposition [3] in Heavy Metal. (Infernal Ruling)
Requisition Points   [Show/Hide]
  • You can choose the same Requisition option as many times as you like, as long as it doesn't put you over a FA limit.
  • You can't mix and match models from different options. Say one option allows 3 Machine Wraiths and another allows 3 Necrotechs. You can't use your Requisition Point to get 2 Wraiths and 1 Necrotech.
  • If you have an option that allows one other solo, you can't use it to get something already on the list. For instance, Ghost Fleet allows 3 Misery Cages (which are FA 4) for one Requistion Point, and it allows 1 other solo. That "other solo" can't be a 4th Cage.
  • If your theme allows "3 weapon attachments" as a Requistion Option, you can spread them into different units. (Locked Thread)
Free models and Specialists (ADR)    [Show/Hide]
  • If your theme only allows one merc solo, you can't have one in your main list and a different one in your specialists.
Unit Attachments   [Show/Hide]
  • If a unit is allowed in a theme, any-and-all of its attachments are allowed too. Exception: Ranking Officers are not allowed unless explicitily mentioned.
  • If the theme force gives a benefit to a specific unit, any-and-all attachments to that unit will benefit too. Even if it is a "generic" attachment like the Void Leech. (Infernal Ruling)
    For example, a Trollkin Sorcerer will gain Serenity if its attached to a Dhunian Knot unit in a Power of Dhunia theme force.
  • If your theme allows "3 weapon attachments" as a Requistion Option, you can spread them into different units. (Locked Thread)
When to apply theme benefits   [Show/Hide]
  • Theme force benefits are applied when you construct your list and models keep the benefit for the whole game. You don't gain/lose theme benefits due to in-game changes.
    Also, if you put a new model into play midgame, they immediately gain any relevant benefits too. (Infernal Ruling)
    • For example, Scourge of the Broken Coast gives Dodge to "models in the army." If your opponent takes control of one of them, it keeps Dodge even though it's currently not "in the army".
    • For example, Storm Division gives lightning immunity to "Cygnar models in the army." If you include a Mercenary unit with a Ranking Officer, they will get the theme benefit and also keep it even after the Ranking Officer dies.

See also these Theme-Specific Rulings   [Show/Hide]
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Rules Clarification : Black Industries      (Edit)

  • The entry which allows "Cephalyx models/units" only applies to Partisan Cephalyx. That's because the theme's rules start off with "this army can only include the following Cryx models"​. Partisan Cephalyx are the only ones that fill that condition.
  • The Cephalyx Agitator also works for Cryx and can go in Black Industries but, because it is not a Partisan, it will use up your Mercenary solo slot.
  • (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : The Creator's Might      (Edit)

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Rules Clarification : Flame in the Darkness      (Edit)

  • You can take any number of Mercenary jacks. You can also select two additional jacks from Khador and Cygnar in any combination you like. Character warjacks with a bond don't count against this limit of 2. (Infernal Ruling)
  • There is a bug in Warroom that allows you to take two Cygnar and two Khador jacks.
  • Morrowan Battle Priest:
    • If your warcaster is a Cygnar model that makes every unit you take a Cygnar unit, and Battle Priests can be attached to any unit.
      Warroom has a known bug where it doesn't allow this interaction.
    • If your warcaster is a Mercenary or Khador model, though, the only units the Battle Priest can attach to are the Morrow ones.
    • If you attach the Battle Priest to The Devil's Shadows Mutineers then it can be returned via Blood Bound. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : Llaelese Resistance      (Edit)

  • It is 2 Cruicible or 2 Cygnar or 2 Menoth.
    You can't take more than 2, and you can't mix and match from multiple Factions. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : The Talion Charter      (Edit)

  • The 3rd benefit is "Sac Pawn [Sea Dog trooper]", not just any Sea Dog. (Infernal ruling)
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Rules Clarification : The Bones of Orboros      (Edit)

  • Una1 cannot be taken in this theme (yet) due to the conflict between the theme's "Only Construct warbeasts allowed" and Una1's "Must take warbeasts with flight". There are no construct warbeasts with flight (yet). But if/when there is, then Una1 can be taken in this theme. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : The Devourer's Host      (Edit)

  • Bradigus1 is not legal in this theme. The theme only allows living warbeasts, his rules only allow construct warbeasts, and you can't just 'skip' his battlegroup - you have to spend your warbeast points.
  • If you create a new model mid-game (ie with the Well of Orboros and that model can have corpse tokens, that model does not enter play with a corpse. Because it's not the beginning of the game. (Locked thread)
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Rules Clarification : The Wild Hunt      (Edit)

  • The animus benefit doesn't apply to enemy warbeasts. (Infernal Ruling)
  • The animus benefit doesn't stack with the Druid Wilder's Herding ability. (Infernal Ruling)
  • When it comes to other things that alter COST (such as Lamentation), follow basic maths: Double/halve first, then add/subtract.
  • Due to the way Tanith's feat is worded, during her feat turn the COST of animi cannot drop below 1. (Infernal Ruling (2019))
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Rules Clarification : The Exalted      (Edit)

  • If a Construct model loses the Construct advantage mid-game, it keeps the theme benefit anyway. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : Band of Heroes      (Edit)

  • Boomhowler uses up your Minion slot. His Fell Calls ability is not enough to make him a "Fell Caller model/unit". (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : The Blindwater Congregation      (Edit)

  • Void Leeches attached to a Gatorman Posse will gain Snacking, but they won't gain extra hitpoints. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : Magnum Opus      (Edit)

  • If Mosby is attached to a Mercenary weapon crew unit, they would gain 3" reposition and would not lose it if Mosby is no longer in the unit. (Infernal Ruling)
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Rules Clarification : Hearts of Darkness      (Edit)