Since last tournament I have been contemplating how I felt about fielding such an expensive and what looks like wasted points in the list. So I decided to get another game in, to see really if Mordrak and his ghost knights are tactically a smart option.

I have not done this for too long and am resurrecting this weekly post.

The Words of Faeit is a weekly post, dedicated to my thoughts on the strategy and tactical side of the game. They are not to be written in stone as "No plan of operations extends with certainty beyond the first encounter with the enemy's main strength" (or "no plan survives contact with the enemy"). Quoted from Helmuth von Moltke.


During the tournament, I was told several times, that the way to field Mordrak was with his ghost knights and Grey Knight Librarian. I was thinking long and hard about that, and then comparing it to how I was using him. First off, lets get this out of the way....... Mordrak costs 200pts, his ghost knights are 40 each for up to 5. So this is a 400pt unit we are talking about.

Mordrak is considered to be a unit upgrade, so no independent character rule with him. This keeps him alive during the assault phase much easier as he cannot be singled out. His ghost knights bring stealth into the equation, and this is what I am using them for.

 I give Mordrak 5 Ghost Knights, 4 with Halberds, and 1 with a Daemonhammer, the weapons are free upgrades. This makes them enough of a threat, that they must be dealt with immediately. You do not want them assaulting you.

I generally deepstrike them in either into a weak spot, or directly in line with where I need to be going. Throw them into cover, or run them there, and accept any loses from the deep strike.

Why Mordrak? I am fielding Purifiers, and dreadnoughts. Getting Grand Strategy is vital, and Mordrak costs 25pts more than a standard Grand Master. Yet he comes with an extra wound, a master crafted daemonhammer and he produces ghost knights when injured. He also deepstrikes in without scattering round 1. That is a lot for 25 extra points.

At 2500pts, I always assume that I am sacrificing him, but that my purifiers will be right there. I was able to get another game in, where I appeared into area terrain, and lost 3 ghost knights to the terrain. My opponent with 10 chaos terminators and 8 combi plasmas, was able to get 14 plasma gun shots off and 4 reaper autocannon shots from this unit. With stealth, only one ghost knight died, and no wounds to Mordrak.

Shooting the round that you appear is probably pointless. 10 storm bolters or run to get into cover? Run.

They then assaulted, with power weapons.... (my halberds were all dead). Mordrak took 2 wounds, and my other ghost knight died. (yes, two more ghost knights appeared).  Two units of Purifiers then came in and saved Mordrak in Assault, and the game was won (rd 2). (they had used scout to hit midfield).

So was Mordrak highly successful? Yes. I have not yet had a game where Mordrak gets killed the round after he appears. The key being where you place him, and finding cover. With those two things in mind, Mordrak has been highly successful in the games I have used him.

Librarians with Mordrak....
This unit is meant to do even more damage, but also raises the cost of the unit by 200+. With powers able to summon other units in, I see how this works and is successful. This creates a spearhead for your army, on which to build. It is different than how I have been fielding him, in that he is the main thrust and focus by adding a librarian into the unit. However, I will not be fielding this way, as adding 200pts to an already 400pt squad gets a little ridiculous in my books.

The unit can be killed... Throwing that much into a unit like this to me seems to be putting all your eggs in one basket. Once that basket is gone, what do you have left. 400pts for this unit is where I draw the line.

Do I like Mordrak. Yes, although I did not expect him to work on the field as well as he does with my Purifiers. I do not know if I would use him at smaller point levels. 2000pts, seems OK, but really anything smaller seems like it would be a lost cause. We shall see.

I think Mordrak used not as a spearhead of your list, but as a distraction and must be killed unit because its sitting in front of me type of unit, is much more valuable than centering your army around him and adding in librarians. He tactically adds to the tabletop, and provides bonus's to d3 units providing flexibility to your list and the mission you are playing. If he lives through the first round of your opponent, watch out, because these guys hit hard when they assault.

10 Comments:

  1. I agree on the fact that it isnt worth spending too much on this unit because it isnt hardy enough. I dont totally dismiss deathstars, just that it is difficult to pull it off well.

    To make a good deathstar, the most important quality is the durability. (if it suck at combat then it isnt deathstar in the first place) Because of its monstrous ability in combat, opponent will want to shoot it down before it gets near, so it will be the no.1 fire magnet.

    Just by soaking enemy fire, its already worth more than half its points, when u managed reached the enemy, then it becomes well worth its points. For me, I dont see Modrak have that durability to b a good deathstar.

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    Replies
    1. I meant Modrak is not worth using as a deathstar considering its durability, point cost, anti tank weaponry, etc. I play Grey Knights too btw.

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    2. the flexibility of where he is placed is the key. I will keep using him, but thus far, no one has been able to take him out in a round.


      Note.... With my IG I was able to kill the entire squad in a game some months ago. Its about how and where you place Mordrak.

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  2. Mordrak & Ghost Knights + Draigo = A very good very expensive very hard hitting hammer

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  3. Flamers of Tzeentch:

    (1) Ignore terrain so you can't hide.
    (2) Wound on a 4+.
    (3) No armour saves, though Terminators get their invulnerables.

    Lord of Change, Prince of Tzeentch or Herald of Tzeentch:

    Boon of Mutation will turn Mordrak into spawn, all be it on a D6 roll of 5 or 6. Ghostknights vanish and chaos player gains a beasty.

    Just a reminder that these 'gifts' are not psychic abilities so no fancy tricks of the Grey Knights can stop them (ok, there is one trick).

    Where's your 400pts now? Good thing not everyone is Tzeentch fan.

    This would be where a Librarian or Dreadknight would be most useful. How? Two words:

    Dark Excommunication

    That's the 'one trick' I referred to earlier.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. want to hear something funny thorson? First game in the tourny daemon player brought two units of three down on Mordrak and his ghost knights. with scatter and my speading out, only lost on 3 ghost knights. Mordrak quickly killed both units in a multi assault.

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    2. By the way, of the four powers I'd more likely go for Khorne. Coolest models. Easier paint job.

      I think you would kick eight shades of warp out of me.

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    3. Yey Natfka!

      Bet he was miffed!

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    4. Thorson, he had more problems than losing his flamers.

      I know this unit has its downsides, and there are great counters to it, at least on paper.

      Tactically though, it really opens up the board. I am working on improving my usage of Mordrak. I have a couple ideas I worked into a list this morning, guess I will see how it works.

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  4. I have been playing a mordrak list in the chicago land area and he has been doing great. I originally took him becasue I didnt want to take draigo and coteaz or purifiers. I use him and the libby as a way to affect my opponents deployment. Usually he rides in the stormraven and is my dedicated assault unit.

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