Welcome to the first in a new series of articles from me – the Lazy Painter’s army lists. Let me explain…
I don’t have the patience for armies so much these days. I like painting my single minis, small scenes, maybe minimal sized units… but not much more. I am become lazy, destroyer of ambitions. But, I still like the idea of working on armies, but they have to be the armies that suit this lethargic style of mine. What’s more, I want to paint the good stuff – both the great new miniatures that come out with the army, and also some of the classic pieces as well. Oh, and smaller units will be a priority as well – units over 5 have to be very easy to paint to get a look in.
And I want the army to play with a bit of fun. I am in no way claiming that this list is “competitive”, but I don’t want it to totally suck and have no synergy whatsoever. But I’ll use a Warscroll Battalion and try to think in terms of tactics so at least this won’t totally suck on the tabletop. Hopefully. I’ve been wrong about these things before.
I also want to say thank you to Games Workshop for sending me the Soulblight Gravelords book to take a look at, and just remind you again that this is more about painting than gaming. So here goes:
Soulblight Gravelords Army List – Like A Bat Outta Hell
This list, coming in at 1980 points, is built around speed. You are going to hit hard, hit fast and hopefully do enough damage to give your opponent pause, while getting a bit of healing in as well. And with a few powerful single minis running behind the main core of your force, you will eventually be able to give your speartip some boosts.
Dynasty – Kastelai
All the Vampire dynasties have some great lore, but the Kastelai have some words written about them in this gorgeous battletome (these books are just getting better and better)that gave me some really good ideas. They have a translocating castle known as the Crimson Keep which means you can really pick any of the realms as the basis for your army quite neatly. What’s more, they are all about the warfare. This means trophies, battle-damage and lots of blood spray if you want a returning army, or lots of clean lines and gleaming shields if you want one going out to war.
This Dynasty also confers some nice buffs to Blood Knights (like setting them up in ambush and giving them perks if they kill units) and seeing as Blood Knights gain the Batteline trait in this dynasty, that’s not bad. Kastelai hosts are also often entirely mounted armis and that certainly helped me pick my Warscroll Battalion…
Warscroll Battalion – Red Banqueters
This Warscroll gives you the ability to heal up to D3 wounds to each unit in this warscroll each round, and we can get most of our army in here (including lots of Blood Knights) so that’s great news. Now we can take lots of Blood Knights, make them extra durable, and get some of HQ choices a bit of help too. Now, the units…
We’re going to be taking four Battleline units here, and three of them are Blood Knight Units of five. With all the above buffs, it seemed silly not to take plenty of them and it gives the army a huge amount of speed. 15 Blood Knights is a lot to paint, but they make up a huge chunk of the army so it’s not so bad. And they look awesome. I think the new Blood Knights might just be my favourite of the new units to come out and offer a great deal of scope for any painter. The banner alone gets my freehand brain thinking of plenty of fun.
And, just for some variety (but also coming in with plenty of speed) we have 10 Direwolves – another beautiful new unit that would suit a bit of speedy Contrast Paint painting down to a T with all those shaggy manes meaning this one won’t stretch me too much.
This is a good mix of old classics and new wonderful things. In order to complete our Warscroll Battalion, we’re going to take the Coven Throne which is a stunning classic in the range that is full of flavour and fun. It too is super fast and full of tricks in combat. It’s also practically a little scene to paint, rather than a unit, so that adds a bit of variety in there too.
Rounding out the Battalion, we have a Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon, and the new Vampire Lord model as well. Zombie Dragons are so much fun and the fact that this thing moves and hits like a tank is a great bonus. And the new Vampire Lord miniature is utterly gorgeous and no wonder the community has been coo-ing over it for a while now. That one will be a real joy to paint.
And speaking of a joy to paint, I’m sticking in Prince Duvall and the Crimson Court as my 4th Leader choice. Now, I’m not necessarily a fan of Underworlds Warbands in big armies, but these are the prettiest vampire models ever. I have them, I can’t wait to paint them – so excited. And while they don’t necessarily belong in a big mounted force, I like the idea of these four, along with the Vampire Lord, running after the cavalry and piling in where needed. And they each have a 6” move with fly so that’s not achingly slow. Oh, and Prince Duvall is a Von Carstein and it’s always nice to squeeze one of them into any Vampire army.
Three Fell Bats. That’s it. I like the models, I want to paint them because they’re pretty monstrous as bats go, and they’re fast. Combining them with all the knights, the wolves, the throne and the lord on dragon, and my opponents won’t have many turns to manoeuvre into a good position, especially with ambushing Blood Knights.
Total Model Count: 35
Total Points: 1980
How To Play: Run fast, hit hard, heal loads.
And there you have it! Our first Lazy Painters army list is done. 35 minis including some older classics and plenty of fresh hotness. The biggest unit is 10 wolves and they won’t take long to paint at all, and while 15 Blood Knights might seem a lot, you can paint each one up in a different set of colours for variety. The Coven Throne will probably eat up the most of your time here, but even that can be done speedily and well with the right techniques and it’s a real treasure of a mini for painters anyway. I think it’s time for me to take a closer look at some Vampires with my paintbrush in hand. Until then, may the Children of the Night sing you to sleep. Onvards!