Tour De Cryx – The Denegrah Surprise! Overview

 

Well, thanks everyone. 

Once again, I get stuck with a bottom barrel caster, which is fare, given the Internets penchant for delivering the best possible result to the most poorly asked questions. Agathia and Mortenebra 2 were excellent surprises that I was glad to have played, but Sturgis was just misery all around. Well, except for one game. I kept thinking to myself, at least its not Denny 2. Well, here we are! Lets see what I’m going to do with her! 

The Approach

When I looked at the Wraith Witch at the turn of the new edition, I was fairly sad to see that they’d taken her feat away, and not replaced it with anything. Thankfully, her spell list is still one of the best in the game. Her main defense, Incorporeal, had gotten better because her natural predators, Gun Mages and Doomreavers from MKII, were relegated to back burner units that no one played. 

From my point of view, that made her a spell slinging caster with no feat, and that meant I was going to need to go a specific direction with her. I would need plenty of Arc Nodes, and a variety of models to abuse her spell list. 

When the new edition came out, I was pretty sure that I was going to run an all incorporeal list with her, as there would just be enough to make it work, with wraith engines, shield guards, Pistol Wraiths, Black Banes and Machine wraiths. I made a list or two with all the parts and then relegated them to the side for the time being. 

The Caster

Lets take a look at her a bit. 

First, Her stats. 

She’s fast, and reasonably accurate, which is great. Anything below MAT 8 is almost always boosting to hit anyway, just in case, so having the lower MAT isn’t really appreciable.  Her defenses are fine, DEF 16 is a giant pain to tag with unboosted hits, and forces boosted hits fairly often. ARM 15 is low, but not terrible. Her speed 7 is one of her best parts. 

She’s undead, with Parry, which is great, and a has a magical weapon, like almost all of her warcaster breathren. with only 16 boxes, she’s frail, but not drastically so. She can survive two straight dice attacks. With 28 Warjack Points, she can fit a pretty substantial battle group in her army without really taxing the rest of the army. 

She can collect souls, which is worth noting because having her at 9 or 10 focus for a turn or two could be completely back breaking for the enemy. Only one soul converting over can let her drop a pair of Hellmouths. 

Wraith Walker is a big rule, one that turns her incorporeal every other turn. I’ve found that often, when you start the chain is critical. if your in imminent danger, turn it on and just keep being a ghost every other turn, but don’t auto-1 or top of 2 it. make sure its valid. 

Her weapon has Dark Banishment on it, which can be extremely useful. Placing an enemy model, and its facing, up to 9″ away can be an amazing swing in tempo, provided you can live through the turn. 

OK. the good part, Spells. 

Man is her spell list good. Lets tear it apart! 

Curse of Shadows: This spell is a poor mans Ghost walk, but also has a great -2 ARM component. I don’t like having to cast it on the enemy to get it out there, but it extremely good to have in the casters repertoire. ARM debuffs are this factions bread and butter, so without it it would be extremely hard for her to play at all. 

HellmouthThis is an amazing spell. I’m pretty sure if I just cast this spell all game at the right spots, It’d be enough. With an arc node to drop the spell where I need it. It can be a threat extender for my army, a threat diminishes for my opponents army, an infantry clearing monster, and an RFP machine. I’m always happy to scalpel out a support solo or a model that provides value, and bringing a few friends to hell with him just makes my day that much happier. 

InfluenceThis stupid spell is still stupid. It has its uses, and its certain situations where it will not be completely terrible, but it just feels like wasted space to me. Maybe one day?

Marked for DeathThis spell seems good. Its a DEF debuff, which is amazing in Cryx as our models can’t hit for shit, but it has solid upside as well with removing Incorporeal and Stealth. With Deneghra, that can be pretty nice, though Cryx often isn’t pushed into a mirror match where they need incorp removal, though I can see it happening. Stealth removal is nice, but I don’t have a ton of guns that really want to get in there and do work. 

PursuitI can see some really specific niche plays with this, but otherwise its really hard for me to say that this 3 cost spell (boosting) is really worth it. Maybe if there is a specific model that needs to move in order to assassinate me, then I can have it out. It is no good against guns and against opponents with methods of spell dissolution, but it is a spell. 

VenomThis is a great spell. Man, I don’t get tired of saying that. while Hellmouth will often be the better play, venom has its place. You can get 2 venoms out of a single hell mouth equivalent of focus, but they are at lower power and you have to roll to hit. This might not matter if you don’t need to RFP or you are just hitting low defense, low armor models. On the other hand, you are likely to tag a ton of models with venom, and can often get a second damage roll on the same models, if needed. All in all an amazing spell. 

The Feat

This stupid thing. I hate it, and I won’t build a list figuring it in. it has its place, though, I give it that. Stormlances and other Cavalry and Battle Engines are making a comeback, which means that I have some solid models I want to, and think I can, affect with the feat. This is also true if one day the Cetratii, Black Ogrun, and other Medium models get theme lists. 

Giving your weapons, all of them, Shadow Bind on hit makes a sort of sense, but with Cryx it is extremely irritating. I feel like it should be a good feat, but its really just.. not good. 

First – Shadowbind itself is a debuff you want to put on high defense targets, in order to be able to maximize your ability to capitalize on the -3 DEF. Making something DEF 9 from DEF 12 is adorable, but only benefits a few models in the army. In order to get that debuff on the target, I have to be able to hit it in the first place, which means I have an accurate model, likely one that doesn’t need the feat to begin with. And, because its a feat and you don’t want to be left without it if you’re banking on it, you can’t just have one feat delivery method, you’ve got to have a few, and by that time, you’re probably spending a bunch of points on things that don’t need the feat to begin with, in order to apply the feat at all. its a diminishing returns type of feat, and that sucks. 

Second – the feat doesn’t do what it advertises. The reason I focused on the -3 defense above is because its the only part of the feat you can really rely on. Cryx had a hard time hitting, but often doesn’t have a hard time simply removing models from the board once they are hit. This means that almost all the infantry that is going to be hit by the army, and could have the second part of the feat affect the, being unable to advance except to change facing, won’t even live to be affected. There is very little infantry in the game that can take the beating that Cryx deals out. Which brings us to the Big Boys – Jacks, Beasts, and Casters. If I kill them, they aren’t affected by the second portion of the feat, and likely were’t really bothered by the first – with a few exceptions. if I don’t kill them they can shake the Binding, if needed, or simply stand still and kill me where I fought them because Cryx is a melee faction. I understand that it is a use of resources, and if I slam, Stationary and Shadowbind a model all at once, it’ll be unable to run, but it can still move and attack just like any other day of the week. Its a really, really irritating feat. I’m currently refusing to plan for it in the list, though there might be some games later on that changes my mind. 

The List

Fast forward to about a month ago, and we start hitting the Ghost Fleet Craze. Its a legit list that brings back tons and tons of models and threatens a solid ranged assassination and plenty of good methods of spot removal. As it turns out, one of the best ways to bring a caster up from the ground is to put a great theme list around her. 

The basic list Idea was pretty easy – Take Deneghra 1’s list and just replace it with Deneghra 2. Simple enough. 

I spoke with The Captain of the Fleet, Tim Banky, and he suggested something like this: 

 

[Theme] The Ghost Fleet

Wraithwitch Deneghra [+28]
– Deathripper [6]
– Deathripper [6]
– Stalker [8]
– Stalker [8]
Captain Rengrave [0(5)]
Hellslinger Phantom [0(7)]
Pistol Wraith [0(5)]
Blackbane’s Ghost Raiders (max) [17]
Revenant Crew of the Atramentous (min) [9]
– Revenant Crew Rifleman (3) [6]
Revenant Crew of the Atramentous (min) [9]
– Revenant Crew Rifleman (3) [6]
Revenant Crew of the Atramentous (min) [9]
– Revenant Crew Rifleman (2) [4]
Wraith Engine [15]

It was a simple enough list, though his had three units with Max Rifles, and min Blackbanes. 

I wasn’t sold on the stalkers, though. I’d not used them in a game yet, and really wasn’t convinced that they were as scary as everyone said. A friend had said that those 16 points should be a Harrower instead of a stalker, and I couldn’t really argue. It was the best Denny 2 list and the best Ghost Fleet list. I was pretty comfortable. 

Then, I got the word, Shortly before I was to take the list out to a tournament, that we needed an Anti-Ghost Fleet counter-list for our team event. Looking at my list, I thought I had a pretty solid shot. Hellmouth is nuts with all the RFP it can generate, and many Cryx lists just don’t have the quantity of Magic Weapons that you’d need to break through the Wraith Engine and Blackbanes. Unfortunately, that meant that the Harrower wasn’t going to make the cut. You need souls to make the ‘jack worth while, and I was almost positively never going to get one. I went looking. 

And found, the Corruptor. 

Yes, you heard me right! I said the biggest waste of points in the Cryx arsenal. However, at 16 points, he slot directly into the Harrowers spot and also provided two RFP effects, one of which can really cause problems by creating an arc node that then Hellmouths itself out of existence. I figured, why the hell not! lets give it a try. 

This was the list I made and brought to the tournament! Come back next time and see how it did! 

[Theme] The Ghost Fleet

Wraith Witch Deneghra [+28]
– Corruptor [16]
– Deathripper [6]
– Deathripper [6]
Captain Rengrave [0(5)]
Hellslinger Phantom [0(7)]
Pistol Wraith [0(5)]
Blackbane’s Ghost Raiders (max) [17]
Revenant Crew of the Atramentous (min) [9]
– Revenant Crew Rifleman (3) [6]
Revenant Crew of the Atramentous (min) [9]
– Revenant Crew Rifleman (3) [6]
Revenant Crew of the Atramentous (min) [9]
– Revenant Crew Rifleman (2) [4]
Wraith Engine [15]

 

Until next time! 

  • Moondog

    Good luck with Denny2. They definitely did her dirty with that feat change in the edition transition.

    The Hellslinger Phantom seems like it was a pretty useful release for her. Accurate guns on a solo that can get boosting ability on its own may make it a decent markerlight for the rest of the army. Though as you said that only really matters against the few higher DEF heavies and ‘casters/’locks it can tag (that uh don’t have a Shield Guard around).

    At least she isn’t Sturgis2? 🙂

    • Tionas

      Yeah, I’m pretty excited that she’s not the worst caster I’m going to play. I don’t know that there is really one out there that can make me as irritated and frustrated as stupid Sturgis 2.

      However, I’m pretty ure there is a glimmer of awesome in Denny, so I hope I can scrape it up!