| Thunderhead |
The Thunderhead is a marvel of innovation, arguably the most sophisticated warjack ever built. Storming into battle armed with electrically charged shock fists and a lightning coil, the Thunderhead lands blows that liquefy metal, roast flesh, and disrupt cortexes when they land, and its lightning coil releases focused electrical bolts of tremendous power with unerring accuracy. The Thunderhead, once Commander Adept Sebastian Nemo's crowning achievement, is as much a work of art as it is an instrument of war. Capable of laying waste to infantry and warjacks alike, some say there is no warjack they would rather have with them.
Special Order Model
International distributors can still access the entire catalog of models.
- Warjack - All warjacks share the same set of special rules. Most notably being big and stompy. Click the link for a full run-down.
- Immunity: Electricity
- Lightning Coil - 10" range, POW 14 gun
- Reload  - This model can spend focus to make up to 2 additional ranged attack(s) with this weapon during its Combat Action. It can make one additional attack for each focus spent.
- Sustained Attack - During this model's activation, when it makes an attack with this weapon against the last model hit by the weapon this activation, the attack automatically hits.
- Energy Pulse (★ Attack) - This attack does not need a target. Each other model within 6" of this model's front arc are auto-hit and suffer a POW 12 electrical damage roll.
- Damage Type: Electricity
- Shock Fist (x2) - 1" reach, P+S 17. Not a super great P+S overall, but amazingly hard-hitting for a fist.
No changes since 2017.02
Thoughts on Thunderhead
Thunderhead in a nutshell
The Thunderhead is an experimental warjack for good and ill. It's got an interesting and powerful game against infantry with its Energy Pulse, ignoring defenses such as Girded and Force Barrier - and able to use this to set up the Sustained Attack on anyone who gets too close. Even without Energy Pulse, Sustained Attack makes it a decent assassin; boost the first to hit roll and then get two more hits in for free. It gets power attacks with two Open Fists. And because of this flexibility it's the most expensive Cygnaran warjack.
The most powerful capability of the Lightning Coil is of course the Energy Pulse. Normal Coil attacks are better against warjacks and other high ARM targets, while the Energy Pulse is better against warriors or low ARM targets. Sustained Attack allows you to keep plowing attacks into hard targets, but you won't be boosting the damage on any but one attack if you want to fire three times.The Lightning Coil is not associated with the Thunderhead's arms or head, so even if all systems are crippled, it can keep making ranged attacks at full efficiency.
With two Open Fists, the TH is one of three Cygnar warjacks that can two-handed throw! Three focus (power attack, boost melee attack, boost throw attack) will probably result in two enemy models knocked down.
Combos & Synergies
Warcasters & other warjacks
- Anyone who gives extra speed (e.g. most Nemos, Jakes2).
- Nemo3 for extra damage on feat turn
- Siege1 for armor piercing auto hit pow 12
- Firefly for extra damage
- Kraye is your man for Thunderhead for some real shenanigans to make the most of the 20pts.
- He has a speed buff that means his Warjacks can out-threat most 2" melee light Warjacks.
- His feat applies Flare, making for some extra guarantee in applying those sustained attack fists.
- Let's not forget the Beacon too. Despite lacking damage buffs, the extra P+S 17 fist attack will help make a mess of most heavies. That's a 14" threat range with a SPD5, melee range 1" model.
- The pulse is also a cheeky way to apply both of those effects guaranteed to whatever needs them (if you don't/can't charge).
- The reposition makes that pulse usable on a regular basis since you don't have to leave him in charge range of whatever survives.
- It's even better if you can reposition back through a wood or similar terrain (Thanks, Pathfinder!) to completely deny any retaliation.
- Admonition can also make infantry armies sweat if they attempt to jam Thunderhead up to avoid that pulse decimating their forces.
- Jakes1 - this may appear to be leaving Jakes as too much of a lynchpin for a squishy solo, but the Thunderhead really loves Energizer and it's enough of a ranged jack that you can keep Jakes quite far back. Sidekick is a nice bonus of course.
- Silver Line Stormguard for extra damage
- Storm Strider - why not bring all the lightning
- He can work with Jakes1 and/or the Storm Strider in this theme, too.
- Caine0 - These two work together marvelously - provided, you can keep Caine from getting sniped out. Fire For Effect is downright mean on your pulse attack, evaporating ARM21 infantries on average rolls, while Spirit Door stops the jack from getting exposed after a successful attack on the enemy.
Drawbacks & Downsides
- It's a special order model.
- It's one of the most expensive heavy warjacks going - and not very survivable.
- As one of the few models that has the capability to severely damage or destroy heavy Warjacks or Warbeasts at range, he can be a priority target for your opponent. It can be worth applying Snipe or one of Cygnar's many defensive buffs if you play it aggressively.
- Thunderhead guzzles focus for the Lightning Coil
- Unless you use lightning combos Thunderhead is paying for all those options and can't use them all at once.
Tricks & Tips
- The Thunderhead has a nasty assassination potential. Especially if it can get within 6" of the enemy caster so it can get the auto-hit from the energy pulse.
- It really likes movement buffs to help get good Pulses off.
- There's a lot of interesting rule interactions with Pulse, read the rule clarifications.
- If you start your activation within 11" of something high DEF that you want dead, simply walk up and use your Energy Pulse to auto-hit it. Now you can purchase additional ranged attacks that also auto-hit thanks to Sustained Attack.
- Jam with lightning immune troops, then next turn free them up with an Energy Pulse. You don't hurt your own guys.
- Critical Disruption is a nice bonus, but not worth fishing for. You're better off to spend focus to boost damage or buy extra attacks than to boost attack.
- Released in Warmachine: Apotheosis (2005)
- The model was resculpted in 2016.
- He's affectionately known as TH, or DJ Thunder (due to the pose of the original model).
- When posing the original model, you may want to turn his left arm palm-up, because it puts the model in a "COME GET SOME" pose. This will make it look less like a DJ, though.
- If you know your opponent is taking Behemoth, and you don't take Thunderhead so they can throw down, you are a terrible person.
Other Cygnar models