Theme - The Thornfall Alliance

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Minion Logo.jpg Theme - The Thornfall Alliance

Minion Theme Force
The Blindwater Congregation - The Thornfall Alliance - Vengeance of Dhunia - Will Work for Food

Where Lord Carver travels, lesser farrow chieftains are intimidated into obedience, and other great farrow warlords have taken up his banner.

Lord Carver Bringer of Most Massive Destruction Esquire III.

Theme Rules

Theme Restrictions

An army made using the The Thornfall Alliance theme force can include only the following Minion models:

Full Model List

Requisition Points

You can spend each Requisition Point on either:

  • One Farrow weapon crew unit
  • One Minion CA
  • One Efaarit Scout solo
  • One small- or medium-based Minion solo without the Lesser Warlock special rule

Theme Bonuses

  1. Farrow warbeast models gain Salvage
    Salvage - When a warjack is destroyed while in this model's melee range, remove d6 damage points from this model. If the destroyed warjack was a heavy or a colossal, remove +3 additional damage points from this model.
  2. Farrow warrior models in this army gain Rise.
    Rise - If this model is knocked down at the beginning of your Maintenance Phase, it stands up.
  3. Before models are deployed at the start of the game, you can place two trench terrain features anywhere completely within 20" of the rear table edge of your deployment zone.

Recent Changes

2020.02

2020.06

2020.09

Thoughts on The Thornfall Alliance

Thornfall in a Nutshell

This theme force is the Farrow army led by Lord Carver (the other warlocks serve as his generals). If you want a piggies themed army, this is the way to do it, with all of the wacky feats and effective spell lists that Farrow warlocks bring to the table.

The Sounder (Core infantry)

Farrow are typically combined-arms, and a force made using this theme force is too. You have a number of infantry options, many of them with Pathfinder, and several with highly specialized roles. Farrow Brigands are the core of many lists, marrying effective ranged weapons with the ability to assume defensive positions anywhere they go on the battlefield with Dig-In. Farrow Commandos are a deceptively effective skirmishing unit (in larger games), just as at home at the head of an advancing Farrow force as when they're ambushing for scenario advantage. Aggressively priced specialty units round out the Farrow infantry line; Farrow Bone Grinders provide good warlock support and late-game aggression, Farrow Valkyries make excellent defensive elite troops (and Shield Guards) with desirable attack volume for their price, and Farrow Slaughterhousers boast high damage potential as well as Take Down to deny Tough and recursion effects.

The Big Pigs (Warbeasts)

The Farrow warbeast stable is a limited and intriguing lot, continuing the theme of combined-arms with slight ranged superiority or focused specialization.

  • Farrow light warbeasts all have two open fists for effective power attacks. The (Battle Boar) is an essential support model for Farrow heavies thanks to its animus (Primal), while the Gun Boar and Splatter Boar bring effective ranged options that remain relevant throughout most games.
  • For heavies you have two options: the War Hogs are the melee heavy of the stable, with high attack volume and damage potential, while the Road Hog is a speedy all-rounder with a devastating flamethrower for solving infantry problems.

The Promise of Power (Support models)

Beyond these core models, The Thornfall Alliance brings a hodgepodge of support solos. Almost anything that can't be found in The Blindwater Congregation's solo range can be found in this theme force. The Dhunian Archon, Targ, and Lanyssa Ryssyl are staple support models for running a Farrow battlegroup hot, Rorsh & Brine is admired by many Farrow players for their flexibility and attack volume, and the Meat Thresher finds many of its most favorable synergies lurking within the Alliance's ranks. Lastly there are a variety of ranged support options from light, precise cavalry fire from the Efaarit Scout, to ambushing utility grenades on Hutchuck, Ogrun Bounty Hunter, to the consistent damage potential of the Farrow Razorback Crew.

Theme weaknesses

Salvage is worse than Overtake

The Will Work for Food theme offers warbeasts Overtake and has more support options. So when a Farrow warlock tries to decide which theme they prefer, the answer often boils down to "how big a battlegroup do I want to have?" The bigger it is, the more attractive WWFF is. As a result, the battlegroup-centric Farrow warlocks almost never use the Farrow theme (a list that definitely includes Dr. Arkadius. Carver1, Sturm & Drang, and Helga2).

Highly Effective is still often Highly Average

While Farrow Infantry respond very well to buffs given their average stats and pricing, this also leaves them vulnerable to debuffs. With no exceptional stats or ranges so remarkable that they stand alone, lists that push too heavily into any one of the theme force's strengths are doomed to fold when an opponent can dismiss that emphasis out of hand. The RNG of our ranged attacks are particularly susceptible to this weakness, and The Thornfall Alliance's choice of warlocks is often dependent on offensive spellcasting to achieve the attack/damage numbers we want as well.

Threat Ranges Are A Struggle

While certain warlocks can solve this problem out of hand (Lord Carver and Dr. Arkadius in particular), Farrow players looking for good alpha strikes will struggle to achieve them against all but the slowest of opponents. This means that many of the hurdles in playing this theme force effectively will involve making the most of tactical situations where there are no advantageous positions to assume. Alphas that emphasize ranged/magic attack volume often aren't as punishing (Brigands exemplifying that strength), but melee alphas are often difficult to overcome without planning for that challenge at list-build.

Deficient Utilities

The Thornfall Alliance's Highly Average disclaimer includes having what is objectively the least robust list of support options when compared to Will Work For Food or The Blindwater Congregation. They bring comparatively few magic weapons to the table, possess vastly inferior spell support (neither the Bone Shrine or the Gatorman Soul Slave), and have a generally less flexible warbeast stable to work with when compared to Gatorman warbeasts.

Like Sows to The Slaughter

While the theme force benefits of free Trench templates and Rise are good ways to round out our infantry's resilience to harassment, their DEF/ARM values are largely victim stats, even where buffs (like Defender's Ward or Deflection) are concerned.

Their Leadership picks Favourites

The Farrow Warlocks are simply not infantry casters, or rather they are often split between infantry and beast support, with a tendency to the latter. Arcadius and Sturm & Drang especially basically do nothing for infantry that beasts can't capitalise on better. The infantry support the warlocks do have is also not really what pig troops need; mostly being offensive buffs, but pigs don't really struggle with damage, they struggle with speed and durability, something their 'lock simply don't provide on a meaningful level.

List Building Tips

Herd of Pigs

Yes I have; have you heard of chickens? Farrow battlegroups are as variable as you like, but there are two prevailing schools of thought that individual players choose to branch out from.

  • The first doctrine places great emphasis on War Hogs and Road Hogs run in tandem, with Battle Boars giving them superior MAT/DMG values when they make their first strike into an enemy line. Arkadius is the core of this philosophy, and his feat turns are the stuff of legend for their exceptional range, but every Farrow warlock save Midas plays well into this strategy.
  • The other doctrine places special emphasis on a battlegroup of five or so Splatter Boars and Gun Boars (mixed and matched to taste), with the majority of heavy melee hits being supplemented by Farrow Slaughterhousers or other means. This latter school is available to most Farrow warlocks, but is particularly favored by Midas, whose infantry support spells number some of the best in the entire game (Battle Lust first among them).

Managing The Grind

When approaching larger point-value games, it is almost guaranteed that a developing Thornfall player will wind up reaching for a Meat Thresher to supplement the otherwise average SPD values of the theme at large. Their combined durability and potential for destabilizing an enemy front-line makes them invaluable center-pieces in a Farrow alpha, or more often just an effective speed bump that will engineer favorable piece-trades within a given round. Exhaust Fumes is often very helpful on the approach as well, particularly where an advance force of Farrow Commandos are concerned.

Model Modules

While building lists in The Thornfall Alliance is particularly responsive to a player's choice of warlock, this is a small list of consistent, effective choices that serve almost all warlocks in the theme from game to game:

  • The Meat Thresher and Farrow Commandos - As already mentioned, make excellent music together. The Meat Thresher can provide Farrow Commandos with Prowl, and the Commandos make a particularly irritating screening force for The Meat Thresher in turn. Caster synergies with this abound, but for the most obnoxious choice, Sturm'n Drang make for a miserable combination here. Best of all, if the synergies between Commandos and The Thresher seem ineffectual in a particular match-up, the Meat Thresher can still serve its default function for most players while the Commandos wait for a good ambush turn. (author's note: While I myself adore Commandos, they're one of the last important pieces to buy, not one of the first. Buy smart, play smart)
  • Maximum Valkyries Go In Every List! - ...no, really. Their value as Shield Guards and all-rounder elite troops is obvious on its own, but almost every farrow warlock plays well into their strengths. Carver and Helga both enhance their to-hit stats, and they are all-stars in Midas lists, where Battle Lust meets their exquisite melee attack volume. Arkadius may be the sole exception to this.
  • Brigands & Slaughterhousers, Better Together - A full unit of Farrow Brigands + Farrow Brigand Warlord in tandem with two units of Farrow Slaughterhousers is the classic infantry compliment to many a Thornfall list. Slaughterhousers are the apex counter-punching unit that wait in the rear-line, and opponents that over-extend to handle them are likely to expose themselves to the full brunt of a Farrow Brigand unit acting under Hog Wild. This module is one of the oldest in the Farrow playbook, and serves as an effective snapshot of the Thornfall strategy across all of its most effective lists over the years.

Warlock Summaries

  • Dr. Arkadius has one of the most battlegroup-intensive toolboxes in the entire game, with dramatically high threat ranges and near peerless buff/debuff potential. While his greatest strengths are given umpteenth compliment in Will Work For Food, he is still a highly effective choice here in spite of his disinterest in Farrow infantry.
  • Helga the Conqueror performs admirably in this theme, particularly with Farrow Brigands, but spanning the entire range of Thornfall options. Dash is a good step in solving their average SPD values and, in tandem with Efaarit Scouts, her feat turn can be highly dismaying for enemy small and medium-based warcasters/warlocks.
  • Midas is all about offense, buffing hitting and damage alike with Battle Lust, Calamity and Death March. Commandos, Slaughterhousers, Valkyries--all of Midas' best troop choices are found in Thornfall Alliance.
  • Lord Carver's widest range of choices to benefit from his feat turn can be found in this theme. In spite of this advantage, he is still a highly viable warlock in Will Work For Food and the theme a player chooses to run him in will much more readily come down to personal preference than with other warlocks.
  • Sturm & Drang can find many of their most consistent defensive modules in The Thornfall Alliance, and Farrow Slaughterhousers is the best supplement to their somewhat unremarkable damage output (even where War Hogs are concerned).

Other

Trivia

Released in the theme-opacalypse (2017)

Other Minion models

Minion Logo.jpg       Minion Index       (Edit)
Farrow Warlocks (Edit)
Warlocks Azazello1 - Arkadius1 - Carver1 - Helga1 - Helga2 - Midas1 - Sturm & Drang1
Lesser Warlocks Rorsh


Farrow Warbeasts (Edit)
Lessers Razor Boars
Lights Battle Boar - Gun Boar - Splatter Boar
Dr Arkadius only: Gorax Rager | Midas only: Boneswarm
Heavies Road Hog - War Hog
Gatorman Warlocks (Edit)
Warlocks Barnabas1 - Barnabas2 - Calaban1 - Jaga-Jaga1 - Maelok1 - Rask1
Lesser Warlocks Underchief Mire - Wrong Eye


Gatorman Warbeasts Edit)
Lights Boneswarm - Bull Snapper - [Underchief Mire only: Swamp Troll]
Heavies Blackhide Wrastler - Blind Walker - Ironback Spitter - Swamp Horror
Gargantuans Dracodile
 
Units, Solos, & Battle Engines
Warlock attachments Targ - Gatorman Soul Slave
Units Farrow

Farrow Bone Grinders - Farrow Brigands - Farrow Commandos - Farrow Razorback Crew - Farrow Slaughterhousers - Farrow Valkyries

Gatorman

Boil Master & Spirit Cauldron - Bog Trog Ambushers - Croak Raiders - Croak Trappers - Gatorman Bokor & Shamblers - Gatorman Posse - Gobber Bellows
Special WA: Void Leech

Unaligned

Cylena Raefyll & Nyss Hunters - Blythe & Bull - Boomhowlers - Lynus & Edrea

Solos Farrow Agata, Queen of Carnage - Maximus - Rorsh & Brine - Targ
Gatorman

Bog Trog Mist Speaker - Bog Trog Trawler - Croak Hunter - Flugwug the Filcher - Gatorman Husk - Gatorman Soul Slave - Gatorman Witch Doctor - Kwaak Slickspine & Gub - Longchops - Wrong Eye & Snapjaw

Unaligned

Alten Ashley - Brun Cragback & Lug - Dahlia Hallyr & Skarath - Dhunian Archon Efaarit Scout - Eilish Garrity, the Occultist - Feralgeist - Flubbin - Flugwug the Filcher - Gobber Tinker - Gremlin Swarm - Gubbin - Gudrun the Wanderer - Hermit of Henge Hold - Hutchuck, Ogrun Bounty Hunter - J.A.I.M.s - Lanyssa Ryssyl, Nyss Sorceress - Ledfoot & Tredz - Orin Midwinter, Rogue Inquisitor - Ogrun Bokur - Raluk Moorclaw, the Ironmonger - Primal Archon - Pyg Tank - Saxon Orrik - Scythe - Swamp Gobber Chef - Swamp Gobber River Raiders - Thamarite Advocate - The Wastelander - Thrullg - Totem Hunter - Underchief Mire - Viktor Pendrake - Void Archon - Weird Wendell

Battle Engines Meat Thresher (Farrow) - Sacral Vault (Gatorman)
Independent Warjack Malvin & Mayhem
 
Minion - Theme Forces
Minion Faction Themes (Edit) The Blindwater Congregation - The Thornfall Alliance - Vengeance of Dhunia - Will Work for Food
Unlimited Minions themes(Edit) Disciples of Agony (Skorne) - Oracles of Annihilation (Legion) - Secret Masters (Circle)
This index was last updated: 2020.06

Rules Clarifications

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Rules Clarification : Salvage      (Edit)

  • Salvage triggers off friendlies dying, as well as enemies.
  • If a warjack is destroyed in melee range of multiple models with Salvage, they all get to heal.
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Rules Clarification : Rise      (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.

Other

  • 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)

  • ​Elias Gade is allowed in Creator's Might. (Infernal Ruling)
  • You can spend the "Two Vassal solos" requistion option on one Vassal Mechanik and one Vassal of Menoth. Warroom has a bug and tells you that you can't. (Infernal Ruling)
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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.
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Rules Clarification : Oracles of Annihilation      (Edit)

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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)