Tour de Cryx Continued – The Admirals New Boat – Skarre 3 Midpoint

Back over two months ago, I wrote up a few lists with Skarre 3 for when she came out, and I’ve finally been able to get more than theory time with her. I’ve dropped her onto the table three times now, so let’s take a look at what she’s done and where I am considering taking her in the future. 

I had batted around a few options when I was starting to work on Skarre 3, and the first two that came out was a Slaughter Fleet list and one for Dark Host. The first game I played was Slaughter Fleet and the second two were from Dark Host. I didn’t play either of the two lists that I had previewed, having thought about them a ton more, and fitting in models I liked a bit better. 

First Impressions

Skarre’ss suite of buffs is powerful, and I like what they bring to the faction. With Guided Fire, Dash, Draconic Blessing, and Deceleration, she provides fixing in nearly every direction, and it was welcomed in both lists.

Dash was the spell I felt I would use the most, and I wasn’t wrong on that assessment. Being able to rachet up both Bloodgorgers and bane warriors to speed 6 was well worth the focus expenditure each turn. Bane’s didn’t get as much from the free strike immunity as they already had it, but the gorgers felt like they could have used it a time or two. Playing into a set of huge bases with Slaughter Fleet made the ability carry little of the weight it normally would, but I still felt its presence. 

Deceleration was the spell I felt the worst about casting most time, which is strange, considering its a spell I begged for. Three focus a turn is a huge sink out of 8, and it caused me to have to make really tough choices about what I wanted to cast and when. Clearly, the math doesn’t support casting every spell every time, but there is always the desire to try. 10 focus is a lot to ask out of a 7 focus caster. Making sure you cast Decel only when needed and useful is going to take a lot of getting used to for me, mostly because I hate getting shot. 

In both games, Skarre mostly floated about in the back, making sure I didn’t lose the game while also handing out armor to guns and extra speed. I never cast Dark Waves outside of the feat turn, which is sad because it is a really good positioning tool, but I was unable to really get a ton of work out of it. Casting it for 1 HP is a lot easier than casting it for 1 focus. I was also really disappointed with her mobility. I thought speed 7 with Flight would be interesting and make her able to do interesting things, but I’ve been wrong more than correct. Every game I’ve been trapped behind a wall of dudes after turn 1, and its felt kinda awful to have her be the crucial order of operations vector, because she always comes in last, owing to the fact that I’m going to want to protect her when her turn goes off poorly, meaning that she activates first, and then often gets stuck out of range and out of reach. I never once got to use her melee attacks, and only a few turns were able to really take nice cannon shots. 

One of the most surprising things about her was how integral her feat is to her gameplay. There is almost always a point where you want to load up the jacks, cast all your spells, and camp a few focus just in case something happens to slide nearby. While many casters simply can’t accomplish the task, Skarre 3’s feat does that amazingly well. Each game it was worth its weight in gold, and I think proper application of that feat will be the key to making sure the game goes her way. Because of that, make sure to bring at least a necrotech and often the Black Ogrun Ironmongers, if you can spare them. That healing is really key. 

Slaughter Fleet

Cryx Army – 74 / 75 points
Slaughter Fleet Raiders

Skarre, Admiral of the Black Fleet [+27]
– Leviathan [16]
– Leviathan [16]
– Satyxis Blood Priestess [0(4)]
General Gerlak Slaughterborn [0(6)]
Blighted Trollkin Marauders (max) [15]
– Jussika Bloodtongue [0(5)]
Bloodgorgers (max) [15]
Bloodgorgers (max) [15]
Scharde Dirge Seers [6]
Scharde Pirates (max) [14]
– Scharde Pirate Officer [4]

The Slaughter Fleet list with her was very interesting. Draconic strength brought the generally mediocre Bloodgorgers into legitimate threats, and the Gang Fighter rule allowed me to be able to take out a TEP. The Marauders and the Scharde Pirates both performed admirably, flanking wide while the two Bloodgorgers went into the center. It was a solid plan, and I think the list performed admirably. Draconic Strength and Deceleration really saved my bacon in this game, and the ability to flood the board with a half a million dudes really helped. 

Dark Host

Cryx Army – 75 / 75 points
 Dark Host

Skarre, Admiral of the Black Fleet [+27]
– Desecrator [14]
– Desecrator [14]
Bane Lord Tartarus [0(6)]
Darragh Wrathe [9]
Necrotech [2]
Soul Trapper [1]
Bane Knights (max) [15]
Bane Knights (max) [15]
Bane Warriors (max) [16]
– Bane Warrior Officer & Standard [0(5)]
Bane Warriors (max) [16]
– Bane Warrior Officer & Standard [0(5)]

While the Slaughter fleet list was good, what I really wanted to try was the Dark Host list I had tinkering in my brain, and man is this list just great. I assembled and prepared my second unit of Bane Knights just for it, and they didn’t let me down. 

do you know whats great? running Bane Knights 13 into Wall of Steel and within Deceleration. With Set Defense, they are a pain to dislodge. Going first, you can fairly simply threaten 30-33″ of the board, putting your opponent on the back foot fairly swiftly. Dark Shroud and Draconic Blessing combine well with either Weaponmaster or Brutal charge, putting the Charging damage of both units to something around 29, and a quick feat turn cycling of the spell allows it to affect two units in a single turn for but one focus. Taking down heavies, colossals, and other pain in the ass models is pretty simple when you’re lobbing so many insanely damaging models at them. 

One of the larger benefits of the list is that due to the extreme threat ranges of the Bane Knights, they tend to absorb a ton of the damage early game, allowing for your Bane Warriors to arrive into battle relatively unscathed. This second wave is often enough to break the opponents back. The desecrators, too, when used right, can often hold off parts of the board from infantry as well as taking out those pesky high defense or stealth solos, as the AOE 4 is large enough to stay on target, and their second focus is nice when you catch a free model. Desecrators don’t benefit from Guided Fire as much as, say, a randomly high rolling leviathan would, but Skarre wants to cast Guided Fire as often as possible anyway because she has three guns she wants to be boosting most shots from anyway, might as well take the ancillary bonus. 

Twists and Tweaks

Honestly, I like both lists a lot, but they are both missing a little something. Dark Host is missing a living unit to get use out of reinforcements, which is an amazing ability that I completely underestimated. d3 revives a turn isn’t anything to turn your nose up to, and I feel that Eilish would be a great addition here. Slaughter fleet feels like it needs just a touch more hitting power, so I’m fairly sure I want to put Ragman somewhere in the list to see if I can keep him alive and kicking to get some damage in. While I am likely to try and make some changes, I’m not really sure what is worth pulling out for what I want to add, and I’m pretty sure its nothing. 

I’ll be going to a tournament shortly, so I’ll likely take one of these lists, and my money is on Boathost. It’s my current favorite list, and I have to get more reps in to see how I can improve and if I still like it. 

Let me know you’re Boat Host lists and other Skarre 3 lists, I’d love to give some of them a shot! 

until next time! 

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I make my lists at Conflictchamber.com