Sniffing the air for the scent of their prey, the Claws of Karanak charge onto the blog today. Check out my thoughts on how I think this warband might play in a game of Warcry and I’ll also share my tutorial guides for painting the Claws of Karanak.
The Claws of Karanak have found themselves deep in the heart of the Gnarlwood. Karanak is the Blood God’s manifested vengeance. Gnawing on the unworthy bones at the foot of Khorne’s Skull Mountain this three headed daemon hound waits to be sent on a hunt. The Claws of Karanak are a band of mortals who worship Karanak. Wearing furs and bestial masks they idolise the Flesh Hounds of Khorne.
To be initiated as one of the pack. Aspirants must go on a hunt and find the prey before one of the Blood God’s Flesh Hounds finds the target. Upon the hounds arrival the young warrior must present the slain prey to the Flesh Hound. How the daemon reacts is how the aspirant is judged worthy or not. If the Flesh Hound accepts the gift and returns to Khorne’s throne then the aspirant is worthy. If the beast tears the aspirant limb from limb then they are obviously not worthy.
The Claws of Karanak warband is made up of 8 warriors (990pts). They are: Packlord (leader 205pts), Hound of Wrath (beast, agile 105pts), 2 Brutilisers (120pts for twin Shredder Blades, 115pts for Shredder Blade and Meat Hook), 4 Blood Whelps (agile 90pts). Even with the average number of models of 8, the force feels like is low on wounds. The Packlord has 20, but the Hound of Wrath seems low at 18. Brutilisers get 15 wounds each and the Blood Whelps get 12 each.
Only 8 fighters, mediocre (or slightly better than average number of wounds and to make this worse 6 of the fighters are only toughness 3. The Packlord and Hound of Wrath are toughness 4. This lack of toughness can’t be improved upon with the Claws of Karanak abilities.
However speed is on your side as everyone has a movement of 5″ with the Hound of Wrath having a galloping move of 7″. This can be coupled with a warband wide ability called Blood for the Blood God [double] which gives a free move or attack action when you take down an enemy fighter. This speed will make it hard for an enemy to avoid you and if they do try to escape and disengage you have a [Reaction] ability called Bay for Coward’s Blood that will give all visibly fighters within 1″ of the disengaging model +1 attack until the end of the battle round when they target the coward. That’s pretty useful if you have a mob of Blood Whelps because you can use their [Double] Pack Hunters to activate another fighter with the agile rune mark to fight next instead of your opponent going next.
I find the number of attacks to be pretty good for this warband. The Packlord and Hound of Wrath get an impressive 5 each, even the Brutiliser with Shredder Blades gets 4 attacks. Everyone else gets 3 attacks apart from the Blood Whelp with Barb-spear who only gets 2. The abilities: Blood for the Blood God [double], Scent of Weakness [triple] and Savage Mauling all bestow extra attacks on this war band.
With all the extra attacks the damage output is pretty healthy too. The worst damage of the warband is 1/3 of the Blood Whelp with Claw Flail (but has a 3″ inch range). Brutilser with Shredder Blade and Meat Hook matches the damage output of the Packlord at 2/5 which is really good. Everyone else is still an impressive 2/4 damage.
Overall, this warband will be fun to play with due to their fast speed, lots of attacks and high damage. It’s an aggressive warband that is brutally single minded with its abilities of more attacks. There’s no subtlety in the warband, it’s just race across the board and hit things. They’re also a lot of fun to paint and 8 is a great number, not too big and not too small.
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