Amon Ad-Raza

I don't claim to be an expert in Warmachine.  In my area we've only recently started playing it.  Still, I have a Warcaster I'm really fond of so I thought I'd share.

Amon Ad-Raza is a 'Jack-Caster', meaning his spells, abilities, and Feat work best with plenty of Warjacks to take advantage of it.  That's not necessarily standard, either, since loading up on infantry and solos are viable strategies.

Nothing hits harder than a Warjack though, so anything which allows you to get these monsters into combat is very useful.  Amon's spell Mobility gives all the Warjacks in his Battlegroup +2 Spd and Pathfinder, so even Menoth's heavy Warjacks who have a standard speed of 4, can suddenly start tiptoeing through the tulips like infantry!

And that's just the beginning.  Synergy, besides being a term I've used since 2009 to describe the useful tactical interconnectedness of units (originally my Eldar, for you historians out there), is another spell in Amon's arsenal.  It's an upkeep which allows a +1+1 bonus to hit and damage for each subsequent unit in the battlegroup which has successfully hit an enemy model.

So my Revenger charges and hits: now my Crusader gets that bonus.  Useful, right?  It's obviously more useful when you have a lot of models in the Battlegroup to take advantage of it... and keep in mind the Warcaster is part of the Battlegroup!

Warmachine/Hordes is a game heavy on tactics.  It's important to have a handful in your arsenal, because it's not enough to build a list and send it out unsupported - everything must work together or you'll get rolled fast.

Moving on, Amon's Feat is the icing on the cake.  He has an ability called Perfect Balance... I won't go into it except to say he can move around without being subject to enemy attacks.  Since normally you'll take an ugly blow for trying to move past a model's control range, this ability is exceedingly useful.  Well, besides having a vehicle to give Warjack's Focus outside of the Activation Phase, his Feat also gives all the 'Jacks this ability.

So on Amon's Feat Turn, he'll drop all his Upkeep Spells (trust me), recast everything then allocate all the Focus used to the Warjacks in his Battlegroup, then move up and use Thresher to open up some holes in the enemy's line.  Thresher is a special attack that allows Amon to hit every model he can see and reach... and he has the Reach special ability!

Now, keep in mind two of the spells he recast are Mobility and Synergy, so the next 'Jack will have a 10-inch charge (light) or a 9-inch charge (heavy) and can move past enemy models without fear of reprisal.  If they can't move in a straight line, they'll simply move past the enemy, saving the Focus for extra hits.  Further, Amon has already hit, so the next 'Jack will get +1+1... if it hits, the next will get +2+2, and so on!

Amon's fantastic for 'Caster-Kills.

Can we do better?  Sure.  For Menoth, a Battle Choir is almost required: on the Feat Turn, use the Hymn of Battle for an additional +2+2 / 'Jack!

The numbers can get huge.

In my army, I use a Crusader and two Revengers.  The Revengers get a bonus to hit with their spear on the turn they charge, so I'll try and send them in first for a guaranteed hit on something, just to get Synergy rolling.  Further, they have Reach: if I need to open a path for my Crusader, I'll avoid charging and just move within 2-inches, then try and remove impediments for my Crusader.

If my Crusader gets a charge on the enemy Warcaster or Warlock and he's got full Focus plus bonuses from Synergy and the Hymn of Battle... that's game over!

I've had as much as +5+5, meaning 23 points of damage with the mace!

I hope I've given you a reason to try Amon Ad-Raza.  The irony is a friend gave me the model because 'he sucks,' and he's currently my favorite Warcaster.  Go figure!

I'll end this with my army, but keep in mind there are more efficient Amon lists.  I use this because it works for me.

Amon +6
Crusader 6
Revenger 6
Revenger 6

Choir 2
The Covenant 2
Rhoven and Guard 4
Dartan Vilmon 3
Paladin of the Wall 2

Really, the Choir is the only unit you 'have' to have - the rest is personal choice.  Keep in mind, I'm still very new to the game, so I don't consider this an optimized list.

For my play style, it works.  That's good enough for now.  If anyone is interested in why I've picked certain units and how I use them, I'd be happy to chat about it.


NOTE: I wrote this for Stelek's forum over on Yes The Truth Hurts.  Here's the link if you'd like to comment there.


Kevinmcd28 said...

this is interesting because I just traded fr a ton of warmachine menoth models and this was one I got, I dont know anything about the game or anything about the army but this is cool

Dethtron said...

just before I gave up on Warmachine this guy was my go to caster of choice running in a very compact, jack heavy army with a pair of choirs and some suicide bombers.

tzeentchling said...

A couple things to keep in mind.
1. Mobility increases SPD, rather than simply giving you extra move (which you did note). Since the Run distance for jacks is based off of their SPD, you can get extremely fast - 12" run for heavy jacks!
2. Revengers pay through the nose for their arc node, which Amon doesn't really use. Personally, I prefer Dervish with him for the multiple attacks and sidestep, especially since they're thematic, but a Revenger or Devout for the Reach is nice.
3. Amon is squishy, despite his perfect balance. If something gets through that Def 15, he's probably going down. This is not necessarily a good thing, as he likes to play somewhat forward, especially on his feat turn. Taking one large unit, say TFG or Zealots, to help screen and deal with other infantry, can usually be a good idea.

Mistress of Minis said...

Menite bible thumping weenies. They dont eat chocolate, drink alcohol or caffeine, lent lasts all year, and they keep knocking on my door every saturday morning!

Which is why I hire Magnus or Gorten to help them become martyrs ;)

Im pretty new to the game too though. All the warcasters I have are well established with their tricks and whatnot, Magnus, Gort, Durgie, Ashlynn etc etc. But its nice to see this sort of write up, since on most Warmachine forums every thing is heavily encoded in jargon based acronyms and simple concepts can get lost in the OMG wtf tldr posts ;)

Maybe we should make some WM/H for dummies & Newbs posts. Of course Id actually have to play some and I dont think 3 games on vassal counts...

Cynthia Davis said...

Looks like an Arabic snuff film actor.

Gauthic said...

Charger: "HEADSHOT!"


Matt said...

Tzeenchling is all on top of this. Wise words!

First time I saw this caster I thought "its like Menoth's answer to Hellboy". The name, the style...for some reason really reminds me of Hellboy! Definitely on my short list of casters I want to play at some point (after I get my Cryx list fleshed out).

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