25 July 2010

Epic Madrak's gonna destroy the world. Right after he's done with you! - by Seymor569

Madrak Ironhide, World Ender.
or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Axe.

Epic Madrak is the Trollbloods ultimate infantry warlock. He has lost all of the defensive measures of his prime incarnation in exchange for pure offensive power. He is a warlock who requires a massive amount of set up and positioning to be played effectively, but if done right your opponent won’t know what hit them. 

StatlineEpic Madrak boasts a very hearty statline across the board. He is fast for a troll with a good strength and an additional point of MAT and armor from his prime form. His new elite MAT of 8 and armor 17, along with his special Grim Salvation, makes eMadrak a very powerful frontline fighter. His fury stat is low, but seeing as he has no offensive spells, this only really limits the amount of beasts you can take with him.  

Grim Salvation – This ability is the result of Rathrok’s awakening causing Madrak to destroy both his enemies and allies. Rules wise this is a great defensive ability if you’re careful and a huge burden if you’re not. Essentially every time Madrak takes damage from a melee or ranged attack, whether it be a single point or thirty, he has to instead sacrifice a warrior model within 1” of himself and negates any damage or effects done to him. The upside of this is that when surrounded by a unit of Kriel warriors or Krielstone bearers, Madrak is almost impossible to assassinate. The downside is that it is required. If you take an unexpected point of damage and there is a model within 1”, it dies, whether it be a Fell Caller, a Champion, or god forbid another warlock in a two warlock game.  
Tide of Death- This ability is a true monster, letting Madrak scythe through enemy formations like a hot knife through butter. Essentially every time you kill an enemy model you can pay 1 fury to move an inch. Coupled with Rathrok’s awakening and his feat, this ability can let you mow down entire units, or just clear a path for an assassination. More uses will be discussed under the feat section. 

Weapon Abilities 
Critical Grievous Wounds- On a critical hit, your target can’t heal, be healed, or transfer damage for one round. Useful if you get it, but don’t count on it to go off.  
Rathrok’s Awakening- Another core ability of the World Ender. Everytime you kill a living enemy model you gain 1 fury. Amazing ability that lets Madrak just chew through enemy units when coupled with Tide of Death.
Reach- Finally changed in the second to last field test update. This also makes his Rathrok’s Awakening, Tide of Death, and Desperate Hour combo (described in the Feat section) that much more imposing.

Thrown Rathrok 
Critical Grievous Wounds- See Above 
Rathrok’s Awakening- See above.  

Blood Fury- Madrak’s unique and defining spell, Blood Fury gives a FRIENDLY model/unit an additional die on melee damage rolls, at the cost of – 2 defence. Upkeepable. This means that you can give even minion units and solo’s an extra die on damage. Essentially making anything you like weapon masters, or DOUBLE WEAPON MASTERS! Champs charge at p+s:11+5d6 with another 11+4d6! EACH. Bam. And who cares about a measly -2 defence. Trolls are already some of the easiest models to hit, so making it a little easier for the enemies probably won’t change the outcome too much. More on this later. 
Killing Ground- Good spell to get your army into Axe to Mouth range (Melee). Friendly Faction models gain pathfinder when they charge, and Warbeasts can make charge or slam attacks for free.  
Warpath- Another good upkeepable spell that lets a Warbeast in Madrak’s battlegroup move 3”. Great for repositioning your ‘beasts to take advantage of Madrak’s feat.  
Feat- Desperate Hour- . All friendly faction models currently in Madrak’s control area can immediately make one melee attack against every model in its melee range, or one normal ranged attack ignoring RoF.
Here it is, the real clincher in any eMadrak list. Madrak’s feat essentially gives all of your infantry a thresher attack that doesn’t hit your own models. There are so many applications of this, and it takes a couple of games to truly figure out how to work it well. I’ll go over some basic strategies here.

First strategy is to use it to clear out models before your own units activate, thus clearing charge lanes for them into the enemies juicy center. Also remember that you can get some warpath moves to adjust a couple ‘beast’s positions and get the most out of the feat.

Another way to use it is to run and engage models, then have Madrak move up and use his feat to clear out a large group of enemies from a fairly long distance away.

And my favorite way of using the feat involves the World Ender himself. Charge a group of models, pop your feat before you make your initial attack. After making your feat attacks against a group of models, you collect a fury for each of them you killed, and then can move 1” for EACH MODEL you killed during the feat, get next to another model and smash it in the face with your initial attack. Then start your Tide of Death moves. It sounds wonky, but it was rules that this is a legal move because Tide of Death triggers off of “each” attack, and Desperate Hour gives you different melee attacks against each model in your melee range that are all simultaneous. Discussion found in this thread.

Syngergies and Listbuilding.

Pyre Troll- Primarily used for its animus to buff damage on other units. Works decently well with eMadrak, but nothing spectacular.

Slag Troll- Same as Pyre. Works decently well with Madrak, great if your Meta is warmachine’s heavy (a lot are at the moment), damage buff and odd ranged attacks.

Swamp Troll- Really suffers if you don’t bring an Impaler. The drag is nice, but at 8” your probably better off charging your models into their lines and using your feat. The animus is nice but a tad bit expensive for Madrak who has a deal of other options for staying alive.

Impaler- Can synergize very well with Madrak depending on what other beasts you bring. It has reach on its spear so it can benefit greatly from eMaddy’s feat. Farstrike on Madrak’s axe can boost to range to help hit models outside of his charge range, and if you have a Pyre, Slag, Swamp, Bomber, or Blitzer in your list, this guy is a must.

Axer- Like the Impaler, except for melee. Reach weapon is amazing for Madrak’s feat, and it’s animus is nice for getting other beasts up the field (aka Mulg).

Bomber- Is okay with Madrak. Benefit’s greatly if you take an Impaler in your list. The animus is nice if there is a lot of AoE spam in your Meta.

Blizter- Another ranged option like the Bomber. The Impaler is less important for this guy since he is originally boasting a range 10” gun, but Far Strike can still do wonders with this guy.

Mauler- A very viable option for eMadrak, boasting both a damage buff (which works on Madrak’s thrown Rathrok too!) and the ability to trash nearly any model in the game while being able to make the full range of power attacks. Brings both the ability be a case cracker, and the ability to stack Rage and Blood Fury on a unit (Caber Throwers, Champs, Longriders) and watch things explode.

Earthborn- Generally an all around great beast. He’s fast, he’s a case cracker, his animus can cause Madrak to become def 16, armor 21 (with the KSB), or speed 8. Or any combination there of.

Mulg the Ancient- This is my money maker. Personal favorite heavy warbeast to run Madrak with. I stand corrected. Protective fit does not trigger on Grim Salvation, though it does still work on transfers (Thanks Vash). Outside of that, Mulg has one of the most powerful reach weapons in the game, a very high mat, and an animus that can come in handy. Seriously this guy combined with a slag or pyre troll can kill anything you need. If he was damaged early, Desperate Hour can let him heal massive amounts of wounds. An all around solid choice. 

Fennblades- My go-to tarpit unit for eMadrak. While not as tough as Kriel warriors, the extra speed and reach attacks make these models an amazing choice for Madrak. You will find yourself using the strategy of running your Blood Fury’d Fenn’s to engage enemy units, then moving Madrak up and using your feat a lot. Blood Fury also works wonders with vengeance attacks, letting your Fenns be pretend weapon masters. Also if you have a fair amount left, or had some drag behind these make excellent choices for Grim Salvation sacrifice.

Kriel Warriors- The other option for eMadrak’s tarpit. They work very well with him too, and serve as an even better source of sacrifices for Grim Salvation. The Take-Up rule lets you sit the Piper or a Caber Thrower next to Madrak, have him be sacrificed, and instead just take another grunt within 1” of the Kriel Warrior model you “sacrifice” instead. Theoretically you could force an enemy to have to damage Madrak 15 times before they could even begin to make you transfer.
If you take the full unit with UA’s and WA’s you have a 15 man unit for 11 points. That’s 15 medium based models on the field for fewer points than Mulg. Caber Throwers with Madrak’s feat are amazing, providing an easy place to put your damage buffs such as Rage or Flaming fists. With a Fervor prayer, warcry, a rage buff, Blood Fury, and the SSE’s Stone Strength Caber Tossers are effectivly reach weaponmasters hitting at MAT9 and P+S 19. OUCH!

Champions- Champs are a very nice second line unit for Madrak. Boasting some of the highest resilience to damage of any Trollblood models, and two p+s11 weaponmaster attacks, these guys are prime targets for Blood Fury. Another case cracker unit, add damage buffs, warcry, and Blood Fury and you have some charging P+S 13-15 +5d6 with another non charge attack right after. Add in the KSB and you have a unit that just took out two jacks, and is now sitting comfortably at armor 20, 8 wounds apiece taunting your opponent.

Long Riders- Very similar in usage to the Champions, but they are much more effective at killing infantry. Pow 14 impact attacks with Horthol and Blood Fury creates a lot of dead infantry, and lets them keep moving on to the harder targets which they can then easily crack. One thing to note is that if you’re using Rage as your damage buff, only the axes will be effected by the extra str because the impact attacks just use the LR’s mounts pow. Slag and Pyre anima though add damage to all melee attacks and thus boost the impact attacks too.

Burrowers- I’m sure you’ve all read The Burrownomicon by now (Great Job on that Sev!) so you know that these little bastards are likely to make your opponent attack you. Cheap and easy with Madrak. Hit ‘em with Blood Fury and Warcry. All the sudden you have pow8 + 4d6 charges followed by pow 14 + 3d6 slug gun attacks. If you can get back arc by all means do it. Awesome little buggers.

Bushwackers- Often overlooked, these guys can actually be very valuable in an Emadrak list. Great for flanking and picking off models from a range, they do get an extra attack from his feat. Not sure if you can do CRA’s with them though.

Krielstone Bearer- Good stuff. Makes your army that much more durable and the UA gives a bunch of the most useful abilities know to all Trollkind! I never leave eMadrak without at least a min unit of these guys. Only take a full unit if they’re going to be your sacrificial lambs.

Runeshapers- Good flanking unit. I would only recommend them in higher point games, but they do bring something to the table that you won’t have a lot of in a Madrak list. Magic attacks. I find they work best on the flank.

Champion Hero- Reach, weaponmaster with a powerful axe and allows champs to move through each other’s bases. Retalitory strike is pretty awesome considering his high mat. Also has the commander advantage and a cmd of 10, which could come in handy. Great under Madrak’s feat too!

Fell Caller- Never leave home without it! Such a toolbox of abilities that not having one is foolhardy! Not to mention he has some pretty good attack stats and a spray. Yes, you can get an extra Fell Caller spray from Madrak’s feat! Awesome.

Stone Scribe Chronicler- I don't find this guy as important as the Fell Caller, but still very nice. Helps your army get up the board and can make certain units a pain to kill (read: Dygmies).

Trollkin Runebearer- Ah yes, the solution to Madrak’s one weakness, low fury. This guy is amazing with the World Ender, and while not necessary in every Madrak list, I normally try to fit him in as much as I can.

Troll Whelps- Good in larger games when you’re running more beast heavy.

Horthol- Only take if you have your Long Riders. While he’s a good Dragoon, and reach is amazing, he is expensive and a fair amount of his worth comes from what he gives to Long Riders. If you have LR’s then he is auto include, if not, you can probably spend your points better elsewhere.

Gatormen Posse- A decently self sufficient and tough heavy infantry unit. Give them Blood Fury and watch them charge 10” with reach. Two pow:13 attacks with the option to re-roll failed attacks or give themselves pathfinder makes them very self sufficient.

Nyss Hunters- Pow:9? Charging weaponmasters with hunter and Blood Fury. These guys can really surprise an enemy whose not prepared for some fast trolls, but at the same time with Blood Fury they will die easily. Not a huge recommend, but it can work.

Totem Hunter- Just a 100% awesome Model all around. I mean what’s not to love. This guy is freaking amazing. Take him any time you can. He will almost always repay his points in spades

Creating Your List
Making an eMadrak list is pretty simple. You start with your basic "slots" as I like to call them.
Tarpit, Tough Infantry, Damage buff Warbeast, and Case Cracker warbeast.
Tarpits are usually either Kriel Warriors or Fennblades. They both work wonders with eMadrak in different ways, so it's really player choice.
Tough Infantry are your Champs, Long Riders, or Gatormen. These are essentially the second wave of your attack. If you're using LR's then they also work very well under his feat.
Damage buffs are on the Slag, Pyre, and Mauler. If you take the Mauler then you fill both the damage buff AND the case cracker slots of your army.
Other Case crackers are Mulg, and and EBDT. Maybe a Bomber or a Blitzer. It's up to you.
Finally add your KSB, Fell Caller, and any other solo's you deem Important. Voila! Theres you're very own eMadrak list!

Sample List
1 Caster, 50 points
Madrak Ironhide, World Ender- +5
Mulg the Ancient -12
Slag Troll -6
Troll Axer -6
Fennblades (Leader and 9 grunts) -8
Trollkin Champions (Leader and 4 grunts) -10
Pyg Burrowers (Leader and 5 grunts) -4
Krielstone Bearer (Leader and 3 Grunts) -3
Stone Scribe Elder -1Fell Caller Hero -3
Trollkin Runebearer -2
Total = 50 points.

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