This article will detail the Gloomspite Gitz army starting from its lore, describing the main units and their roles, how the army plays and finally our personal opinion of the army. SPOILERS: it contains images and description of Spiders.
For a complete run-down of the different armies available in Age of Sigmar, consult our Age of Sigmar army overview article.
In this article we will refer often to Matched Play and other technical terms like allegiance abilities, command points, army roles in building a list, core battalions, Endless Spells/Invocations, etc. We assume the reader will be knowledgeable with those terms, otherwise please refer to the relevant guides for more details.
Overview of Gloomspite Gitz Army
The Gloomspite Gitz are a collection of coward and vengeful creatures that live in the most reclusive places in the Mortal Realms. The vast majority belongs to one of the different tribes of Grots, small green creatures with red eyes that lack all attributes that characterize the other Destruction armies to which they compensate with cunning vengefulness and vast numbers.
Grots would often seek help from other creatures with which they share their habitat, often after becoming their meal and having satisfied their hunger. Dumb Troggoths come from the darkest caves, spiders hail from the forests and the squigs are fungal creatures bred for the most convenient scopes.
Originally the Grots were the Goblin part of Warhammer Fantasy Orcs and Goblins army, but since then the entire range has received a re-sculpt and only few models are not of recent origin. ForgeWorld also had some models, relics of the Warhammer Fantasy time, but they have since all gone and the rules banned.
Gloomspite have been historically a fun army to play, with many crazy and random abilities that make an extremely amusing night but are not reliable enough for competitive play. The third edition tome resolves this problem by giving more predictability while keeping the fun the previous iteration had. As a result, Gloomspite Gitz fortunes in the third edition changed drastically and they are now in a much better spot in the meta ranking.
Visually they are not a cohesive army with so many different aspects pulled together, but that is exactly the vibe they want to communicate. As such, the army can be plaid as a full horde army or an extremely elite one, depending on your preferences. The cost of the army will then vary accordingly, but overall they are on the cheaper side with good recent models priced on the low range.
Lore of Gloomspite Gitz Army
The Grots exist since the beginning of the Mortal Realms when they followed Gorkamorka, the Destruction deity, on his quest as Beast-slayer of Sigmar. Initially they all belonged to a single tribe originally from Ghur, the Realm of Beasts. But, for reasons lost to time, the tribes split and each occupied a new biome that would then characterise their future appearance and choice of allies.
The Moonclan chose to hide from the light of the sun and left the surface for the comfort of the subterranean caves while wearing black robes. The Spiderfang instead retreated in the darkest forests and jungles and started worshipping the giant arachnoids that infested those places eventually creating a bond with them so that they can now ride them to battle. At least until the Arachnaroks are not hungry, in that case they can snack of those Grots unfortunate enough to be around. The Gitmob had the strangest approach: they decided to chase the light of Hysh in the numerous plains of the Realm of Light on the back of Snarlfangs, lupine creatures that are specifically bred as war mounts.
It is in the Age of Myth that resides the appearance of the Bad Moon, a celestial entity that roams the skies of the Mortal Realms shading everything with its gloom, empowering the Gitz to new deeds of brutality and transforming in fungi hosts all unlike enough to look at it or be caught under its light.
Gloomspite Gitz all venerate the Bad Moon one way or another, and all have their own tradition on how it came to be, mostly after an interaction with Gorkamorka that infused some of his powers to it. On the opposite side, the Gitz fear the light of Hysh that they call Glareface Frazzlegit.
When the Age of Chaos dawned, most grots had to flee and hide until the right moment to return back to backstab the surface dwellers. This moment arrived when Sigmar sent his Stormcast Eternal warriors to the Mortal Realms to retake from the Chaos forces what was once civilized holdings. A perfect opportunity to cause further mayhem that the resurging Grots were quick to grasp.
Gloomspite domains run deeper than any mortal can imagine and their presence is in every hidden corner. Skagrott, self-proclaimed king of the Grots, managed to conquer the land of Ayadah in Chamon, the Realm of Metal, attracting the blessing of the Bad Moon that permanently bathe with its gloomy light those lands.
When Kragnos awoke from his prison as a consequence of Alarielle’s ritual of life, the grots followed him and Gordrakk in the Big Waaagh! against Excelsis. It was Skagrott with the help of the Bad Moon that stopped the fight between Kragnos and the Ironjawz leader allowing the green crusade to continue. Despite their best effort, Excelsis was saved at the last minute, but this did not stop Grots from continuing their quest of stealing pieces of the Spear of Mallus from the city protected by Sigmar.
Aside from the different Grot clans, a Gloomspite Gitz horde can also include Troggoths, extremely strong but also dumb creatures that follow the Grots knowing that would lead them to abundance of food. The most infamous of their leaders is Glogg, that led the strongest Troggherd to trump the realms. He was last seen dismembered during the siege of Excelsis, a fact that may not have stopped him considering Troggoth’s incredible regeneration.
Another important component of most Gloomspite hordes are the squigs: fungal creatures that can be bred to assume any role and form the Grots can think of, but the most iconic shape is that of a red ball of claws and fangs of various sizes that is either thrown to the enemy or ridden to battle by courageous Loonbosses. Between them all, a mysterious one know only as the Overbounder, leads the squigalanche called Jaws of Mork, that started its rampage in Ghyran, the Realm of Life and continues its journey with the objective one day to jump over the Bad Moon.
Army rules for the Gloomspite Gitz
But how does a Gloomspite Gitz army play on a tabletop? First let’s go through the main rules for this army.
As all 3.0 edition armies, Gloomspite Gitz have their own subfactions called Gittish Hordes that provide an extra layer of customization to the army:
- King’z Gitz, the followers of the Loonking Skagrott, grants one re-roll when using the Loonshrine Moonclan Lairs’ ability.
- Badsnatchers, Moonclan tribes hailing from Ulgu, experts in deceit and magic, can re-roll one dice in a casting roll if within 9″ of another friendly wizard.
- Jaws of Mork, the most famous squigalanche committed to jump on the Bad Moon, increases by 1 the squig attacks when charging.
- Glogg’s Megamob, a Troggherd led by Glogg himself, enables Troggoth’s regeneration after they fight.
- Grimscuttle, the most fervent worshippers of Arachnaroks, hailing from Shyish, allows up to 2 Spiderfang units to join a Skitterstrand Arachnarok in ambush.
The most important battle trait for this army concerns the Bad Moon, a celestial object that you can represent with any token. The moon will now start its orbit at the centre of one of the battlefield quarters and move diagonally towards the opposite quarter. Once it reaches the middle it affects the entire battlefield, otherwise it affects the quarter in which it is positioned and a the third move, it leaves the battlefield.
You roll a dice at the start of the any battle round from the second one onwards, on a 4+ the moon moves, otherwise stays in its location.
But what happens to the units bathed by the light of the Bad Moon?
- Moonclan units Rally on a 4+ instead of 6 (command ability that allows to restore slain models in the hero phase).
- Gloomspite Gitz Squigs can run and charge.
- Gloomspite Gitz Troggoths add +1 to their save
- Spiderfang units do mortal wounds on an unmodified hit roll of 5+ instead of 6.
Note that the addition of Gloomspite Gitz in some rules is to avoid allies from benefitting from it.
Gitz heroes have also access to two additional Heroic Actions:
- Beckon the Lunatic Hordes: allows a Moonclan hero affected by the Bad Moon to issue the Rally command to up to three different units at once.
- Wade and Smash: allows a Dankhold Troggboss engaged to an enemy unit to move 6″ towards any other enemy unit and do impact damage (D3 mortal wounds on a 2+).
There are also two new monstrous rampages specific to certain monsters that we will see in the dedicated section.
Gloomspite’s command traits have two selections, one available to all grots and one for the Dankhold Troggboss. They are all really powerful options, from the ability (The Clammy Hand) to use twice per turn the Moonclan Lair ability of the Loonshrine (that allows to resurrect half of a slain unit) to the ability (Fight Another Day) of Loonbosses to retreat after fighting or wizards to cast an extra spell when under the Bad Moon influence (Loon-touched). And Troggbosses are not inferior, as they can become Monsters with 2 more wounds (Alpha Trogg) or add to the list a Gloomspite endless spell without paying its cost value and attempt to summon it as if they were wizards (Loonskin).
The list of artefacts of power contains some really good choices as well, like the Staff of Sneaky Stealin’ that gives a bonus of +1 to casting that increases every time the wizard successfully unbinds a spell or Loonstone Teefcaps that increases the rend of that hero’s squig mount or companion.
Spiderfang heroes can use the Headdress of Many Eyes to prevent enemy units from hitting them unless they score unmodified hit rolls of 5 or 6, and Troggbosses can become enraged if their Pet Gribbly gets squashed (on a roll of 1 for each wound received and not negated) increasing their hit and wound characteristic by 1.
There are two different Spell Lores available to Gitz, one for Moonclan wizards (Lore of the Moonclans) and one for Spiderfang wizards (Lore of the Spiderfang). More details in the specific section.
Units and their roles in the Gloomspite Gitz Army
Heroes in Gloomspite Gitz
Heroes can perform Heroic Actions, in addition to the other abilities they can perform. You do it in the hero phase and you can only do one heroic action. Here is the list:
- Heroic Leadership: on a 4+ (or 2+ if your general has been slain) get a command point only that hero can use.
- Heroic Willpower: one non-Wizard hero can attempt to dispel or unbind a spell for that phase like he was a wizard.
- Their Finest Hour: can be used only once by each hero to improve save and wound rolls by 1 for that turn.
- Heroic Recovery: a disengaged hero can heal D3 wounds if he rolls less or equal to his bravery with 2D6.
For Kragnos’ review you can see our guide. Skragott is the self proclaimed Loonking, ruler of Ayadah and the creator of the Fungal Asylum he uses to predict the Bad Moon movements. In game terms this means that once per game instead of rolling for the Bad Moon, you can decide if it stays where it is or moves. Skagrott provides also a 12″ bubble around him of Bad Moon light that is extremely useful as it moves with him.
He is not a melee fighter, but with a 4+ ward he can survive some shooting. As a wizard however, he is extremely versatile being a double caster with knowledge of the entire Lore of the Moonclans, +1 to casting and dispelling and a personal spell that does mortal wounds to a unit within 24″ with an extremely low casting value (3).
On top of all of this, once per turn he can issue a command without spending points. He is quite expensive, but it’s his utility that makes him almost an auto-include in all lists. He is the best tool to control the Bad Moon whereabouts.
The Fungoid Cave-Shaman is the miniature that heralded the re-sculpt Gloomspite Gitz received. In game, he is a single caster with a 50% chance to give an extra command point each of your hero phases. Once per game he can cast a second spell from the entire lore, even if he didn’t know it earlier.
He cannot be targeted outside of 12″ range but his signature spell is a 6″ area damage from him that is a bit short for a wizard with 6+ save and no ward. He is a decent hero, but wouldn’t replace Skragrott’s place in an army.
The Madcap Shaman is one of the oldest kit in this army, actually coming in a blister with 2 different models. They are a single caster but once per battle they can cast a second spell and if the casting roll is a double suffer D3 mortal wounds. Its signature spell is a protection against shooting attacks (-1 to hit).
The Loonboss is the melee leader of the Grots, this version is the one on foot. With 4+ save and 6+ ward he has some chances to survive but not many. His main use is for his ability that allows a unit receiving All-out Attack from him, to allocate mortal wounds on an unmodified 6 to wound in addition to any other damage/effect.
The Squigboss with Gnasha-squig is the latest hero to join the fray. He is there to buff the squig units (from +3 to Move, to 1 mortal wound on unmodified hit roll of 6 or +1 attack) but with 5″ movement he will struggle to keep up with the squigs, and 4 wounds on a 6+ save means he will evaporate quickly.
When a grot leader becomes particularly courageous, he ties two giant squigs together and rides them becoming a Loonboss on Mangler Squigs. Since he can improve squig unit’s wound roll by 1 once per game, he is a perfect option to lead or accompany a squig army.
When charging he has the potential to do a bit of damage (5 mortal wounds on average) but on top of that, he can use his monstrous rampage (he is a monster himself) to move an extra 3D6″ deeper in enemy lines. And if he get injured that’s not much of a problem as his deadliest profile is when he is at his last 2 wounds. And if it dies, as all grots eventually do, has one last chance to damage all units (including yours) within 3″.
The Loonboss on Giant Cave Squig has 2 weapon profiles: one extremely consistent (the moon-cutta) and one that greatly improves when charging (Moonclan Stabba). His main ability is to fight together with a unit of Boingrot Bounderz.
The Loonboss with Giant Cave Squig is the old Skarsnik model, a character well known to Warhammer Fantasy fans. As a melee fighter is not bad, he can even utterly slain a single low-wound model once per combat phase and increase the bravery of a friendly unit by inflicting them D3 mortal wounds first.
Grinkrak’s Court is a Warhammer Underworld warband from Season 7 with a really thematic mechanic that allows them to get a 4+ ward if they control an objective or terrain designated at the beginning of the game. Apart this, Grinkrak can make a unit fight even after being slain and there’s the first Squigapult! Now we need an entire unit of them!
Zarbag’s Gitz are a warband from the second season of Warhammer Underworlds. Zarbag himself is a wizard with a 50% chance to double cast each turn. And his spells are really interesting with one preventing positive modifiers on hit, wound and save rolls of an enemy hero, and the other forcing an enemy unit to retreat.
The Dankhold Troggboss is the go-to general for a Troggoth themed army. It regenerates every hero phase, has a 4+ ward against magic spells and a 4+ save that becomes 3+ when bathed by the Bad Moon light with decent attacks that can be further improved with the artefact Pet Gribbly.
The reason you would want it as your general, is the fact that unlocks Rockgut and Fellwater Troggoths as battleline and when it issues them All-out Attack, it also increases their melee attacks by 1.
Mollog and its mob are one of the most particular warband from Warhammer Underworlds, coming from season 2, but still quite popular. It is a hero and a leader and the three companions provide 3 extra wounds and some potential buffs, for a profile otherwise similar to a Dankhold Troggoth with an added shooting attack.
The Scuttleboss on Gigantic Spider is the Spiderfand melee hero with an interesting profile that does mortal wounds on an unmodified 6 to hit (or 5+ if under the effects of the Bad Moon). As all spiders he can crawl on top of scenery pieces like he had flying and his last ability allows him to retreat with a unit of Spider Riders at the end of the combat phase.
He is a good target for the artefact Headdress of Many Eyes if you are theming your army around Spiderfang.
The Webspinner Shaman instead is the wizard option available to Spiderfang. He is a single caster with a 5+ ward and a spell that allows Spiderfang units to run and shoot or run and charge.
He is one of the cheapest wizards in the entire game, but comes as well on top of an Arachnarok Spider that gives more mobility, more wounds, a better save (but no ward), a bonus to casting for all Spiderfang wizards within 12″ (including himself), access to monstrous rampages including its own and the ability to fly over terrain.
The spider attacks are venomous (mortal wounds on an unmodified hit roll of 6) and can be further increased with his signature spell Venom of the Spider God.
Monsters in Gloomspite Gitz
Monsters can perform special abilities called Monstrous Rampages at the end of the Charge phase. Each action can be performed only once per phase therefore only up to 4 monsters can perform one at a time. Here is the current list:
- Roar: on a 3+ an engaged enemy unit cannot issue or receive orders in the following combat phase.
- Stomp: on a 2+ do D3 mortal wounds to an engaged unit that is not a monster.
- Titanic Duel: + 1 to hit rolls against another engaged Monster.
- Smash to Rubble: on a 3+ demolish a close-by terrain feature, disabling its scenery rules.
The Mangler Squig, and its hero version the Loonboss on Mangler Squig, have both access to the monstrous rampage Giant Boing! that allows them to move 3d6″ after the charge to position themselves better after allocating mortal wounds to the first charged unit. For the rest this unit is identical to the other without the Hero keyword and ability to buff squigs.
The spider kit is the most versatile one in the army with well 4 profiles available. We have already discussed the Webspinner Shaman in the hero section, but you can have also the Arachnarok Spider with Spiderfang Warparty that is battleline if the general is Spiderfang and counts as 10 models for the rules of contesting objectives, the Arachnarok Spider with Flinger whose shooting attack halves a unit movement characteristic until the next hero phase and the unmounted Skitterstrand Arachnarok that can go in reserve and re-appear outside 9″ from enemies and return back in ambush at the end of the combat phase to teleport next round. It can bring in reserve 2 more units in the Grimscuttle sub-faction.
All of them have access to the monstrous rampage Ensnaring Web that has a chance to prevent an engaged enemy hero from fighting. Chance based on beating their wound characteristic (so unusable against heroes with the Monster keyword or more than 7 wounds).
In addition the spider attacks are venomous and they can fly over scenery (but not enemy units).
The Aleguzzler Gargant is the same model used by the Sons of Behemat as main battleline. He can charge from 18″ distance, but on a triple roll falls on the ground damaging any unit within 2″. Same damage that is activated when he dies. It is a decent unit but a bit out of context in this army.
Battlelines in Gloomspite Gitz
The Moonclan Shootas represent the classic grot archery unit with lots of attacks (2 per model if there’s more than 10 in a unit), tough odds to score a hit (4+ to hit / 5+ to wound), no rend but a whopping 20″ range that is not to be underestimated. However, there’s not many things that can be done to improve their shooting attacks apart from the Gobbapalooza increasing their rend to -1, but is that enough?
The Netters (the grots armed with a Barbed Net) now give -1 to hit to any enemy within 1″ from a grot unit with netters, so no more checking which one is close to which enemy model and complicated calculations. You still need to distinguish how many have a net as they can’t shoot.
The other classic and standard battleline option are the Moonclan Stabbas representing the melee infantry. Here the Netters (described above) are more useful as this unit will often clash with others and the Net attacks are actually better than a spear. The spear remains the best option if you are playing with 3 ranks (60 grots), while the sword/stabba are more effective for smaller units (20).
But their best ability is the one that allows them to contend objectives from 9″ distance instead of 6″, that is a great ability as it allows them to stay just outside the hot zone and put many more bodies than other elite armies that are then forced to leave their comfort zone around the objective to remove the threat.
The Squig Hoppers are the last standard battleline option for this army and a great one at it. With D6+10″ movement, they are now much faster and more reliable, do damage after moving over enemies (they can fly) and have decent attacks but a low defence. They go in group of 10s as opposite of the alternative assembly of this kit that has minimum size of 5.
Conditional Battlelines in Gloomspite Gitz
The Squig Herd is now a battleline only if the general has the Moonclan keyword (basically everyone except Spiderfang heroes and the Troggboss). And they are a good one at it. The squig themselves have a decent melee profile with -1 rend and each herder has a good chance to bring D3 slain squigs back each of your hero phase. If they fail battleshock tests, the fleeing squigs will do mortal wounds to enemy units within 9″. Overall an all-round good battleline unit.
The Boingrot Bounderz are the other half of the Squig Hoppers kit but their minimum size is 5 instead of 10. As the Squig Herd, they become battleline with a Moonclan general. They are relatively fast, but have better defence and grot attacks than their Hopper cousins. They damage at the end of a charge phase and have the same buff on their lance after charge as the Loonboss on Giant Cave Squig that enables them to activate in chain one after the other in the combat phase.
The Fellwater Troggoths become battleline when the general is a Troggboss. They are the anti-tank unit with their shooting attack reducing by 1 the save roll of targeted enemy unit and preventing any positive modifier until your next hero phase. They also give a -1 to hit malus to enemy units engaged with them and have otherwise a decent melee profile.
Their role goes beyond a simple Troggoth unit, they can be useful in any Gloomspite Gitz army by making less scary the strong enemy defensive options.
The Rockgut Troggoths are the second battleline option unlocked by a Troggboss as general. Compared to the Fellwater they are more tank-y (4+ save that can become 3+ under the Bad Moon and 5+ ward, plus hero phase regeneration), but their shooting attack is negligible and their melee profile, while at a first look more damaging, it is statistically less accurate. Their role is more of an anvil.
The Spider Riders are battleline when a Spiderfang hero is selected as general together with the Arachnarok Spider with Spiderfang Warparty. Unfortunately that ends their description because their shooting attacks are negligible and neither those or the spears are venomous so that only half of the melee attacks have a chance to do mortal wounds making this unit a wasted potential.
Wizards and Priests in Gloomspite Gitz
Gloomspite Gitz wizards have access to two different spell lore depending if they are Moonclan or Spiderfang.
Skagrott, Fungoid Cave-Shaman, Madcap Shaman, Gobbapalooza and Zarbag all have access to the Lore of the Moonclans with great options like Itchy Nuisance that gives an enemy unit the strike-last effect, or The Hand of Gork that allows to teleport a friendly unit around the battlefield 9″ away from enemy units.
The Gobbapalooza greatly represent the grot’s craziness: they are now a single unit made of 5 different type of grots, two of which, Boggleye and Shroomancer, are wizards. Boggleye signature spell can prevent an enemy unit from issuing and receiving command abilities until your next hero phase, while Shroomancer gives a -1 to hit to any enemy unit attacking friendly units within the 12″ bubble.
The other three grots can be activated once per turn and provide +1 to run and charge (Scaremonger), +1 to hit and wound in melee for a hero (Brewgit) or improve the rend characteristic of any weapon (Spiker). For a brief moment before was released the FAQ that prevents the same unit from receiving twice one of these effects, it was theoretically possible to have multiple Gobbapalooza give extreme high rend to units of Shoota.
Skagrott is a double caster with knowledge of the entire lore and a +1 bonus to casting and dispelling. The Fungoid Cave-Shaman and the Madcap Shaman are single casters who can cast a second spell once per game, while Zarbag is a single caster with a 50% chance to cast a second spell each turn.
The subfaction Badsnatchers provides an extra buff to Moonclan wizards allowing to reroll one of the casting dice if within 9″ of another friendly Moonclan wizard and the artefact Staff of Sneaky Stealin’ provides a +1 to casting that increases each time the Moonclan wizard unbinds successfully.
The Webspinner Shaman, both on foot and on Arachnarok Spider, has access to the Lore of the Spiderfang with good options like Scuttling Terrors that allows a Spiderfang unit a move in the hero phase and Curse of da Spider God that makes hit and save rolls fail on an unmodified roll of 2 in addition to the roll of 1. Normally a single caster, the one on the Arachnarok can cast twice but unbind only once and gives a +1 bonus to cast and unbind to all Spiderfand wizards in range.
All Gloomspite wizards can benefit from the Arachnacauldron endless spell that gives an extra spell to the summoner.
There are no priests in this army.
Other units in Gloomspite Gitz
The Sneaky Snufflers are experts in finding the right mushrooms. So good, that if they don’t move they will find excellent Looncaps that can give a 5+ ward to a friendly unit within 12″. On a 6, or a 5+ if bathed by the light of the Bad Moon, the mushrooms also give +1 attack in melee. It’s a good buff, if you are already close to the frontline.
The Fanatics are another iconic Grot unit, now available in two different versions. The Loonsmasha Fanatics are the classing ones that hide inside another grot unit (without the Squig or Fanatic keyword) to appear at the beginning of the charge phase. They can then be used as screening to protect a key unit during the enemy charge phase, or to reinforce your attacking phase by unleashing them to the enemy. They have strike-first and with -2 rend the amount of damage they can do can be quite high.
The Sporesplatta Fanatics are less deadly, do not hide but their main purpose is to create a cloud that obstructs line of sight unless either model flies or is a monster. In addition, they add +1 attack in melee to any friendly Gitz unit within 9″ that is a really good bonus that they can provide even when they return back following the Loonshrine ability.
The Snarlfang Riders represent the Gitmob, those grots that instead of hiding in caves and other hideous places, roam freely the steppes while riding their powerful wolf-like mounts. They are a skirmish unit, able to shoot while re-deploying, basically combining Unleash Hell and Redeploy in a single command ability. They are however not the most precise shooters and most of their damage comes actually in melee from their mounts, that allow them also a 6″ pile-in move. Rippa’s Snarlfangs were the first Gitmob new sculpt, as part of Season 3 of Warhammer Underworlds. They have a better profile than the normal Snarlfangs but lose the redeploy ability.
The Dankhold Troggoth is the non-leader version of the Troggboss. It has the same immunity to spells (50% chance) and the Troggoth regeneration in each hero phase. Despite its size, it is not a monster, but can still crush a single model if it beats its wound characteristic with a single D6 roll. He has on paper good attacks, but statistically performs a bit less than a Loonsmasha Fanatics unit.
Endless Spells, Terrain and Start Collecting in a Gloomspite Gitz Army
Gloomspite Gitz have access to 4 different endless spells. Mork’s Mighty Mushroom damages all units within 8″, including yours, but can be placed at 6D6″ distance.
Scrapshuttle’s Arachnacauldron is a cauldron linked to the summoning wizard that gives him an extra spell per phase, and if the wizard is a Moonclan, he has access to all spells of the Lore of the Moonclans. On the downside, every commanding player hero phase it does 1 mortal wound to a unit within 3″ that can be the wizard himself if there’s no one else around.
The Scuttletide provides an interesting obstacle to enemy units as it has a decent footprint on the battlefield and has a chance to do mortal wounds to anyone moving nearby that is not a Spiderfang.
The Malevolent Moon does mortal wounds to close-by units, except Gloomspite Gitz, but its main use is extending the light of the Bad Moon with a 12″ around it.
The Bad Moon Loonshrine is Gloomspite Gitz terrain piece. It’s impassable (not even flying units can get in it), cannot be garrisoned or provide battleshock immunity anymore but in exchange it now provides a 12″ bubble of Bad Moon influence and can restore half a unit of any type (not hero, unique or with wound characteristic greater than 5) independently from the general type. So now Troggoth units can be resurrected at the same time as Boingrot Bounderz or Squig Hoppers, and if your general is within 12″ and has chosen The Clammy Hand command trait, can do it twice per turn. Resurrected units cannot be resurrected a second time.
Gloomspite Gitz received as well a Vanguard box that replaces the previous Start Collecting. As the new rules are more cohesive, the fact that you have Moonclan, Squig and Troggoths all in the same box is not a problem at all.
The box contains a Loonboss on foot, 20 Shootas or Stabbas (can be assembled either way), 10 Squig Hoppers or Boingrot Bounders (you can’t assemble 5 and 5, you have to choose a single assembly option for all 10 as Squig Hoppers minimum size is 10), and 3 Rockgut Troggoths.
It is not the most competitive list of units, but Rockgut are a good anvil unit, the squig riders have a decent attacking profile with high mobility, the Loonboss has a great buff for Moonclan units and the other grots represent the main battleline unit. So you have potentially 3 battleline options in an overall interesting first purchase, unless you are focussing your army only on one of the different tribes.
Tactics and Final Verdict on the Gloomspite Gitz Army
The first thing that we notice is that the keyword bingo that made this army almost unplayable is gone. While each unit kept their keywords that represent certain specific traits within the Gitz culture, creating a cohesive but diverse army is completely possible.
The other big change that makes the army much more predictable and therefore competitive, is the control over the Bad Moon that provides great additional buffs. Now the moon starts on the battlefield and has 50% chances to move and 50% to stay in position. Skagrott can add a further level of control by deciding, once per battle, if the Bad Moon moves or not.
In addition, those important buffs provided by the Bad Moon light can also be given when within 12″ of Skagrott, the Malevolent Moon endless spell and Bad Moon Loonshrine, greatly extending the range of these effects.
The other improvement is from the Squigs movement that now has a minimum result to which to add the variable roll of one or more dies, that makes them more reliable. All of this without sacrificing the fun and unpredictability of this army: from the Troggboss artefact Pet Gribbly that can be activated only rolling a 1 after a wound is not negated unblocking the hero rage for the loss of his pet and the consequent bonus in the attacks, to the 4+ ward obtained by Grinkrak’s Looncourt after contesting and winning an objective or terrain piece. Thematic, entertaining and not game-breaking.
Gloomspite Gitz can still be divided in blocks, of which the Moonclan is the most varied with great leader options like Skagrott or the Loonboss (both on foot and on Mangler Squig) and the vast majority of battleline units (a Moonclan general has 5 battleline choices out of 9 total).
Squigs are a sub-group of the Moonclan sub-faction, and they are almost independent, only thing missing would be a wizard and some ranged options, there will ever be a time for Squigapults? Squigs are also the most consistent units and avoid to create an excessively huge horde army (Stabbas can easily go in groups of 60 grots…).
Troggoths, with the presence of two leader options, are also self-contained including the best anti-tank unit (Fellwater Troggoths) and a good anvil unit (Rockgut Troggoths).
The Spiderfang are the most interesting as represent those that prefer living in the forest or jungles, but their main battleline, the Spider Riders, does not really have a role with poor attacks and non-existing defence. They could have worked with more skirmish rules (they can retreat but only the end of the combat phase and only if a Scuttleboss is nearby and retreats as well) or just with the poison rule being extended to their shooting attacks and spears. A pity, because the Skitterstrand is probably one of the best models in the army.
The Gitmob are just a stub of something that undoubtedly is coming, but for now we don’t know when, they don’t have any hero option and only 2 units of which one is a Warhammer Underworlds warband. Despite so the Snarlfang Riders have a role as skirmisher in a mixed army.
And is probably the mixed army the best way to use this army. While 3 subfactions provide bonus to specific units for which is better to maximise their presence, adding some extra layers is not an issue. For example, Skagrott is always useful, Sporesplatta Fanatics can protect anyone against shooting armies.
Each subdivision excels in something: Moonclan have the numbers (Stabbas can even contend objectives outside the usual 6″ range), Squigs are fast and hit hard, Troggoths have great units and the Skitterstrand Arachnarok provides ambushing capabilities.
Whichever direction you go, you can complement your list with units from the other “subfactions “tribes” to give you an advantage where you don’t excel. As a bonus, a great allied unit (pending a new battletome) is the Marshcrawla Troggoth, that while cannot benefit from the Gloomspite Gitz Troggoth interactions, it provides a +1 to hit to all friendly units around it.
If you are interested in the competitive standpoint, when we talk about statistics, a tremendous effort is done by Rob from the Honest Wargamer, Ziggy and Tsports Network! in the AoS Stat Centre with precious information, constantly kept up to date.
Really good informative material is also collected by Dan from AoS Shorts.