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Stormcast Eternals Army Guide for Age of Sigmar

This is the Stormcast Eternals Army Guide for Age of Sigmar.

In it we will describe in detail the Stormcast Eternals army starting from its lore, describing the main units and their roles, how the army plays and finally our personal opinion of the army in Age of Sigmar.

For a complete run-down of the different armies available in Age of Sigmar, consult our 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.

The feature image for the Stormcast Eternals Army Guide

Overview of Stormcast Eternals Army

The Stormcast Eternals are, in many ways, the protagonists of the Age of Sigmar fictional universe, or at least, they are the focus of most major events in the game’s history such as the starter sets for new editions. They are the elite fighting force of the God-King Sigmar, fighting against overwhelming odds across all the Mortal Realms to reclaim them for Order and civilization.

Since they’re the poster boys of the franchise, they have an absurd number of different units available.

There are more than 70 warscrolls in their battletome! This might sound like too much to wrap your head around, but it also makes them a good starter army, since they have a tool for almost every situation: from hard-hitting melee infantry to devastating shooting units, from fast cavalry to wizards, flying units, artillery and more heroes than anyone could ever possibly need.

On top of that, most of those units are durable and have multiple wounds, as well as usually dishing out a good amount of damage. They’re not as specialized as Kharadron Overlords or as excellent at magic as a Lumineth army, but you can learn almost any playstyle with them, and they are fairing pretty well at tournaments (as of writting at least).

Let’s have a look at their background before we dive into all their rules

Archaon versus Sigmar artwork
Archaon versus Sigmar

Lore of the Stormcast Eternals

The Stormcast Eternals are created on the Anvil of Apotheosis in Azyr, the Realm of Heavens, by the God-King Sigmar himself with the help of the duardin god Grungni. Sigmar was the leader of the Pantheon of gods during the Age of Myth, when Order and civilization thrived across the Mortal Realms.

When the disruptive forces of Chaos started entering the world, ushering in the Age of Chaos, Sigmar was forced to withdraw to Azyr, and the Realms were lost to Chaos. From his sanctuary, Sigmar made a plan for retaking the Realms: he began collecting the souls of brave human heroes who had stood against the forces of Chaos, and with the help of the other gods, he began reforging those souls into immortal superhumans: the first Stormcast Eternals.

When all was almost lost and the forces of Chaos were closing in on the very last pockets of resistance, Sigmar made his move: lightning struck from the sky, and within that lightning, regiments of plate-armoured Stormcast Eternals descended as magical paratroopers and started fighting back against evil. Whenever a Stormcast warrior was struck down by the enemy, they ascended to the heavens in a blast of lightning, and their souls returned to Azyr to be reforged and be ready to fight again.

Unfortunately, this form of immortality came at a price: each reforging stripped away a bit of the warrior’s soul, so that for each time they died and came back again, they were a little less human.

While the Stormcast are in many ways the heroes of the Age of Sigmar, it doesn’t mean they’re perfectly good: as they go through their reforgings, they become less empathetic, less sane and more like killing machines, and anyone in the Mortal Realms with a less than spotless record of purity and anti-Chaos sentiment fears the heavy footsteps of their armoured “saviours”.

Over the centuries since their first arrival in the Mortal Realms, the military organization of the Stormcast army has evolved. Sigmar designed his warriors in a number of chambers, each with a different function, and for every new threat thrown at the forces of Order, he has a habit of releasing a new one on the battlefield: the Warrior Chamber was the first to arrive, with its rank-and-file shield-bearing units of powerful melee fighters and their support units. They were essential to obtain the first victories during the Realmgate Wars, a series of campaigns with the scope of freeing the most important Realmgates from the clutches of Chaos.

Soon the skirmishing Vanguard Chamber started hunting down Chaos forces in the wildernesses of the Realms. And when Nagash released the Necroquake and filled the Mortal Realms with Death magic, the magic-wielding Sacrosanct Chamber entered the fray. There are even more chambers such as the drake riders of the Extremis Chamber, and some not yet revealed like the Ruination, Covenant and Logister Chambers.

Most recently, many of these chambers have received more advanced reinforcements, as the deeds of Daemon Prince Be’Lakor made it much more difficult for slain Stormcast warriors to return to Azyr thanks to a phenomenon called the Cursed Skies. The new Stormstrike Armor, the latest gift from Grungni, solves this issue granting new powers to those wearing it, including the ability to return to Azyr despite the Cursed Skies. In addition, the Seraphon revealed the hatched eggs of Draconith they preserved since the time Kragnos‘ race waged war against them and now the most trustworthy Stormcast ride the skies on top of these powerful allies.

Stormcast Eternals are divided into Stormhosts, brotherhoods of warriors with distinct aesthetics, traditions and tactics. Some, like the Hammers of Sigmar, are classic heroic liberators, while other Stormhosts are more sinister such as the hyper-dogmatic puritans of the Knights Excelsior, or dedicated to specific pursuits such as the monster-slayers of the Astral Templars.

Perhaps the greatest deed of the Stormcast Eternals so far is their role in establishing the Free Cities: small pockets of civilisation in the still mostly Chaos-dominated Mortal Realms. In the Free Cities, many Stormhosts have established a more permanent military presence, and they can now be seen defending cities such as Excelsis alongside ordinary humans, duardin and aelves, or traveling tirelessly across deserts and mountain ranges with the expansionist Dawnbringer Crusades.

Whether you see them as paragons of Order or terrifying colonisers, the Stormcast Eternals are taking back the world of Age of Sigmar – well-knowing they have to fight for every inch of it, and even pay for it with their own humanity.

Read our article here if you want to know more about the lore of Age of Sigmar.


Ironjawz fighting Stormcast Eternals
Ironjawz fighting Stormcast Eternals

Army rules for Stormcast Eternals

How does a Stormcast Eternals army play on the tabletop in Age of Sigmar?

Let’s begin with the Battle Traits of the army, which are the main rules that define it.

There are 2 main choices that will define what type of army you will field.

The 1 option is a stormhost, the subfactions of the Stormcast Eternals, that provides a single bonus and sometimes a conditional battleline:

  • Hammers of Sigmar: all your units gain a ward save of 6+ when near objectives. Conditional battleline: Dracothian Guard Concussors/ Desolators/ Fulminators/ Tempestors.
  • Hallowed Knights: Redeemer units have a chance to fight after death.
  • Celestial Vindicators: exploding hits on a 6 for a single unit.
  • Anvils of the Heldenhammer: a chance based on enemy’s Bravery to negate the first 2 wounds allocated in the combat phase by enemy units.
  • Knights Excelsior: 1 Paladin unit improves their to hit/wound stats when fighting against more numerous units. Conditional battleline: Annihilators, Decimators, Protectors, Retributors.
  • Celestial Warbringers: once per phase re-roll of a hit, wound or save roll.
  • Tempest Lords: a flying unit can reroll a single dice on a charge roll. Conditional battleline: both Prosecutors.
  • Astral Templars: Monstrous rampages cannot pick units from this subfaction. Conditional battleline: Vanguard-Hunters, Vanguard-Palladors.

The 2 choice is even more important as it determines the type of army you are going to play with:

  • The Scions of the Storm are your classic Stormcast, able to be put in reserve and reappear at the end of a movement phase anywhere outside the 9″ radius from enemy units.
  • The Stormkeep allows you to include Cities of Sigmar units as coalition fighters (1 in 4). In addition, the Redeemer units obtain bonuses when around objectives.

On top of this, all Stormcast have a chance to inflict mortal wounds to their attackers when they die (roll as many dice as the wounds of the slain models and for each 6+ it’s a mortal wound back, Thunderstrike armour adds an extra dice).

Stormcast fighters also have a plethora of enhancements:

  • Command Traits: where the most interesting may be Master of the Celestial Menagerie to protect a bit more your Behemoths (enemies get -1 to wound against all friendly Behemoths). Apart from this, the universal ones like Master of Magic or High Priest are immortal classics.
  • Artefacts: Mirrorshield (small protection against shooting), Drakescale Armour (protection against high damage attacks) and Luckstone (once per game you can choose the result of a roll without rolling the dice) are some notable mentions, although the universal Arcane Tome is a common sight in Stormcast lists.
  • Spells: Stormcast wizards have some good choices but, between them, Celestial Blades (+1 to wound to a unit) and Thundershock (a chance to provide -1 to wound to all enemies in range) are those that most attract attention (together with the universal Flaming Weapon).
  • Prayers: for the multiple priests available in the army with Translocation enabling to teleport units around the battlefield.
  • Mount Traits: another list of good options but we would recommend Celestial Instincts for a retreat and shoot/charge.
  • Holy Commands: that is a way to obtain extra command abilities.

With so many units in the roster, some keywords are more important than others. Redeemers, for example, are your standard foot infantry: Liberators, Sequitors, Vanquishers and Vindictors.

Paladins are the more elite infantry (Annihilators, Decimators, Protectors and Retributors), while Justicars are some of the ranged options (Castigators, Judicators, Vanguard-Raptors and Vigilors).

Finally, many heroes have the Lord keyword (especially the named characters), while most of the remaining ones are Knights.

Artwork of Stormcast Eternals fighting an army of Khorne

Units and their roles in the Stormcast Eternals Army

Heroes in Stormcast Eternals

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: a chance to get a command point only that hero can use.
  • Heroic Willpower: one non-Wizard hero can attempt to dispel or unbind a spell for one phase like he was a wizard.
  • Their Finest Hour: once per game improve save and wound rolls for one hero.
  • Heroic Recovery: a chance to heal some wounds to a hero based on his Bravery characteristic.

There are more Stormcast Eternals heroes than total units in many other Order armies (39!). While we will list all of them for completeness, such a number has clear losers and winners. It is difficult to maintain such a huge number of heroes and keep them interesting and with niche abilities, but if you love army building, there may be a hidden gem for you in the midst.

Many named characters (but not all) belong to the Hammers of Sigmar faction, meaning that they can’t get another subfaction keyword and they cannot benefit from the bonuses given by other subfactions. This does not mean they are useless outside of their core faction, but you may need to think a bit about their integration. Gardus Steel Soul is the first character from the Hallowed Knights subfaction.

Celestant-Prime miniature
Celestant-Prime miniature

The Celestant-Prime, Hammer of Sigmar is the first great hero Stormcast ever had and he wields nothing else than Ghal Maraz, Sigmar’s hammer! He is a strong hero with a 3+ save and 4+ ward that makes him extremely resilient while his attacks improve the longer he stays on reserve (+2 every turn he is not deployed). He can then come down on the third battle round with 7 reliable attacks at -3 rend and 3 damage each hit… call it a wreck train!

And he is not linked to any Stormhost, allowing him to benefit from their bonus. For example, in Tempest Lords he can reroll one of the charge dice roll the turn is deployed…

Krondys, Son of Dracothion
Krondys, Son of Dracothion

Krondys and Karazai are two brothers, sons of Dracothion, the God-beast that awoke Sigmar and since then helped him in the fight against Chaos. These two elder Draconith, once princes of a powerful race, have lived for many centuries separate from their own, that disappeared since the cataclysmic war against the Drogrukh led by Kragnos.

Krondys, Son of Dracothion is a Behemoth and a double caster (2 spells or unbinds per turn) with a +3 bonus on casting on top bracket (as many behemoths his stats degrade the more wounds he takes). His shooting flame attack (shared with his brother and the non-hero drakes) is not reliable but his tail attack can be devastating against horde units (the number of attacks depends on enemy units within 3″). And remember you calculate the attacks that way, but then you can choose any target within 3″ with all those attacks.

Karazai the Scarred is the fighter version of Krondys, with more attacks than his brother including 6 -3 rend 3-damage attacks. He can also upgrade himself every time he destroys a unit depending on the type of unit destroyed. On top of that, he has the same breath attack, tail and resilience as his brother.

Yndrasta, the Celestial Spear
Yndrasta, the Celestial Spear

Yndrasta, the Celestial Spear is the hero that introduced Age of Sigmar 3.0, first released in the Dominion box. She is specialised in hunting monsters by lowering which rows the nearby monsters have to look at.

She has the same 3+ save, 4+ ward as the Celestant-Prime but she is a better support hero by resurrecting low-wounds friendly units in range while also avoiding battleshock tests in the same 12″ radius.

Lord-Commander Bastian Carthalos
Lord-Commander Bastian Carthalos

Lord-Commander Bastian Carthalos is the supreme leader of the Hammers of Sigmar, represented by his ability to issue a free command ability per turn to any Hammers of Sigmar unit. He is even tougher than the other lords of the army with an ability to heal all wounds allocated as long as his attacks slain at least a model.

Vandus Hammerhand
Vandus Hammerhand

The Vandus Hammerhand kit (from the original starter set of Age of Sigmar) can also be used to assemble a generic Lord-Celestant on Dracoth. While the Lord-Celestant on Stardrake kit can also be assembled as a Drakesworn Templar, both Leaders and Behemoths.

The Lord-Celestant is their version on foot, and is a bit more useful, providing a free All-Out Attack command per game and a decent shooting attack.

Aventis Firestrike, Magister of Hammerhal
Aventis Firestrike, Magister of Hammerhal

Aventis Firestrike, Magister of Hammerhal can also be assembled as a more generic Lord-Arcanum on Tauralon. Aventis is a double caster wizard with decent attacks, the ability to self-heal on his own hero phase and a buff on Hammers of Sigmar and Hammerhal units at the end of the move phase.

Astrea Solbright also belongs to the Sacrosanct release and is a push-fit miniature.

Gardus Steel Soul
Gardus Steel Soul

Gardus Steel Soul is the first named character from a stormhost that is not Hammers of Sigmar and the protagonist of a series of novels from Josh Reynolds. He is not only a decent fighter but can also buff Hallowed Knights: once per battle all fighters wholly within 12″ can re-roll charge rolls and add +1 attack. He also provides a 5+ ward to all Hallowed Knights units in range.

Gavriel Sureheart and Neave Blacktalon complete our list of named characters. Neave’s model can also be used as a generic Knight-Zephyros.

Lord-Arcanum on Gryph-charger
Lord-Arcanum on Gryph-charger

Lord-Arcanum is a type of hero wizard that can come mounted on a Taurolon (with the +1 to hit on nearby units after a move), on a Celestial Dracoline, on a Gryph-charger or on foot. They all have the ability to negate the last wound taken by a slain model once per turn.

The Lord-Imperatant is the first of the non-named heroes present in this list to wear the newest Thunderstrike armour and is accompanied by a Gryph-hound. He is an interesting support hero, able to issue a free command ability per turn and enabling units in reserve to be set up outside of 7″ of enemies instead of the canonical 9″.

Lord-Relictor
Lord-Relictor

The Lord-Relictor first appeared in the original Age of Sigmar starter set. It even had a name in the narrative: Ionus Cryptborn, the loyal friend of Vandus Hammerhand. Today is it is one of the oldest continuously used Age of Sigmar miniature. He is a priest with +1 to chanting rolls and two simple prayers: one to heal, and one to damage and reduce by 1 the hit rolls of an enemy unit. Artefacts like the Mirrorshield (protection against shooting) or Arcane Tome (to make him a wizard as well) can really increase this unit’s usefulness.

Command traits like High Priest (universal enhancement that allows to re-roll chanting rolls) can be combined with universal prayers like Curse (that forces the target enemy unit to take mortal wounds for each to hit roll of 6 from any opponent) or with Translocation (allowing to teleport dangerous units around the battlefield, like Vanguard-Raptors). And prayers cannot be stopped by enemy priests as opposite to spells. His 3+ save can easily be upgraded to a 2+ making him extremely hard to kill and if the opponent spends many resources on him, there’s other targets he is leaving behind.

The Lord-Castellant is also a first wave hero and a useful one, with the ability to add 1 the Save rolls of a friendly unit. This type of cheap but high-save heroes, can be used in few situations and it’s easy to add them in any roster.

But not all are great options, for example: the Lord-Exorcist (a wizard), the Lord-Veritant (priest and totem) and the Lord-Ordinator (previously used to buff Order War Machines, they are now not that popular any more, but this can change).

Knight-Draconis
Knight-Draconis

The Knight-Draconis is the latest hero to join the fray. He is riding a majestic Draconith and is one of the most popular choices for a Leader since he was released. His shooting attack is ok, but his melee profile is devastating with several high rend attacks 2-damage apiece.

Being one of the favourites for the role of general, he can be even further buffed. For example, a common tactic is to provide him an Arcane Tome, that makes him a wizard with 12″ flying movement, and that can be further combined with a command trait like Master of Magic (universal enhancement) to re-roll one casting, unbinding or dispelling roll per phase. Flaming Weapon and Celestial Blades would then be excellent spells for him. And being a mounted hero, he can even take Mount Traits, for example Celestial Instincts allows him to reposition in case he has been bogged down in an unfavourable fight.

The Knight-Incantor is a useful little wizard. Once per game he can unbind any spell without rolling and his signature spell reduces by 1 the run and charge rolls of any enemy unit within 18″. Once a popular miniature with different versions available, he is now a bit more difficult to find.

Knight-Judicator with Gryph-hounds
Knight-Judicator with Gryph-hounds

The Knight-Judicator comes with a unit of 2 Gryph-hounds that can be summoned for free. Apart from that, he can do some damage in the shooting phase, but has only 2 attacks, and has an area of damage ability that can be used once per battle.

Unfortunately, that was also the last of our useful Knights, as the rest is more forgettable: Knight-Relictor, Knight-Venator, Knight-Azyros, Knight-Arcanum, Knight-Heraldor and Knight-Questor. Some, like the Knight-Azyros, may find some use in certain lists, but are not really popular options today.

Knight-Vexillor with Banner of Apotheosis
Knight-Vexillor with Banner of Apotheosis

The Knight-Vexillor and his friend with the Banner of Apotheosis are in the same list as above. They differentiate a bit as they are totems and allow Stormcast Eternals wholly within 12″ to re-roll charge rolls but for the rest they mostly have a once-per-game ability.

Monsters in Stormcast Eternals

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: a chance to prevent an enemy unit to issue or receive orders in the following combat phase
  • Stomp: a chance to do D3 mortal wounds to a unit
  • Titanic Duel: + 1 to hit rolls against another Monster
  • Smash to Rubble: a chance to demolish a terrain feature, disabling it’s scenery rules
Karazai the Scarred
Karazai the Scarred

Most Stormcast Eternals monsters are also heroes: Knight-Draconis, Lord-Arcanum on Tauralon, Drakesworn Templar, Karazai, Krondys and Lord-Celestant on Stardrake.

The only non-hero option is the Stormdrake Guard, an extremely efficient unit that is currently exterminating enemy forces around all Mortal Realms.

If you need monsters, the Stormcast will not shy away with some great options in the midst. And if you need to fight them, Yndrasta can force them to fight at a disadvantage (by lowering the row in the table they have to use while around her) and Astral Templars are immune to some Monstrous Rampages.

Battlelines in Stormcast Eternals

Judicators with Skybolt Bows
Judicators with Skybolt Bows

The Judicators come from the fist release of AoS and they are the only pure battleline with shooting attacks. They have two different weapon loadouts, each with their own profile and the chance of a specialist weapon every 5 models. The Skybolt Bows‘ mortal wounds on a 6 beat slightly the exploding 6s of the Boltstorm Crossbows but you could argue for both weapon profile. Skybolt Bows are however much more popular.

Liberators
Liberators

The Liberators are the most representative of Stormcast infantry. Omnipresent in all stories and novels, always pictured in various context, they are the quintessence of the rank-and-file troop, the bastion of humanity against the Chaos forces.

In game they had highs and lows, and while right now they are not the most popular battleline option for Stormcast (Vindicators have that honour), they are a good second by a low margin (and one of the top-used units in the entire game).

They have two different loadouts, one that provides +1 save and one +1 attack, but since they are here mostly to hold objectives, you may prefer shields every time. In addition to be a Redeemer unit, they can allocate mortal wounds to units within an objective each combat phase (on top of the Stormkeep rules).

Sequitors
Sequitors

The Sequitors are another Redeemer unit, one of the least popular of the lot but still a great option for holding objectives. They are from the second edition wave, part of the Sacrosanct chamber, and have an ability to focus on offense (exploding 6s to hit) or defence (5+ ward) each combat phase greatly increasing their versatility.

Vindictors
Vindictors

Vindictors are the newest battletline for Stormcast, straight from the Dominion box and many other Starter Sets. And they are also the most popular option with their 3+ save, decent attacks with 2″ range and mortal wounds on 6s to hit. They are also currently cheap for their use as an anvil or to control objectives (being Redeemers they can also benefit from the Stormkeep abilities). Definitely one to consider, especially if you are not taking any stormhost that unlocks conditional battlelines.

Vanquishers
Vanquishers

The Vanquishers are another new unit from the latest wave, but compared to the other battlelines they lose in point cost / efficiency. They are not a bad option, there are just better choices. And this may change once we move from a monster-focus to a horde-focus, since the Vanquishers really shine against big units: from 2 to 4 attacks each when facing units with 10 models or more. They are also Redeemers.

Conditional Battlelines in Stormcast Eternals

While the list above is already bigger than most armies, there are many other units that can become conditionally battleline in a Stormcast Eternal army.

Retributors
Retributors

The first of these is the entire category of Paladins, the elite infantry of the Stormcast, that are conditional battleline in a Knight Excelsior stormhost. The oldest of this group are the Decimators, Protectors and Retributors. The latter in particular were present since the first starter set of AoS.

The Decimators are those specialised in fighting units more numerous than themselves getting to 7 attacks -2 rend each. The Protectors instead focus more on defence, with a +1 save that makes them harder to shift from objectives.

The more balanced are the Retributors, with exploding 6s (double hit on a 6). All Paladins come from the same kit and have the possibility to equip the Starsoul Mace (2 models every 5) for straight up mortal wounds (on a 2+).

Annihilator with Meteoric Grandhammer
Annihilator with Meteoric Grandhammer

But the most common Paladins are the newest guys in town. First introduced in the Dominion set, the Annihilators have two different profiles, the standard Annihilator and the Annihilators with Meteoric Grandhammers. They have similar profiles including the same ability to damage after a charge and after being deployed, and re-rolling charge rolls the turn they are set up.

What distinguishes them is the 2+ save of those with shields that makes this unit a perfect anvil. They also hit hard but if you are looking at more offence, then the Grandhammers with -2 rend and 3 damage must be your favourite option. While they have “only” a 3+ save, that is already a good save characteristic.

Dracothian Guard Fulminators
Dracothian Guard Fulminators

The Dracothian Guard have 4 different profiles, all coming from the same kit, that can be battleline in a Hammers of Sigmar army.

While they all have their use, currently the Fulminators are the most favourite thanks to their -2 rend 3-damage attacks the turn they charged that results in a massive amount of damage that turn (on average 15 damage per 2-men unit against a 4+ save, including the mounts attacks).

Concussors and Desolators are pretty similar as damage output, with the first one doing mortal wounds on a 6 to hit and the second one increasing their attacks to 7 against units with more models than their unit.

This leaves the Tempestors that, in addition to the mount breath attack shared by all Dracothian Guard, have an extra shooting attack with exploding 6s (two hits on a unmodified 6 to hit).

While being one of the oldest Stormcast models (came out roughly a year after the first wave with the Extremis Chamber), they are powerful beasts extremely efficient in what they do and the point changes may shift the balance of which one will be the most used profile.

Prosecutors with Celestial Hammers
Prosecutors with Celestial Hammers

The Prosecutors are another model from the original starter set, in this case conditional battleline in a Tempest Lords army. They have two different profiles: armed with Celestial Hammers or with Stormcall Javelins. Both profiles have a further option for a specialised weapon for more damage and the Hammers can be wielded in two hands for more attacks or combined with a shield for a +1 save.

While their attacks are not terrible, you are taking them mostly as cannon fodder, chaff to throw to the enemy to screen some other more useful units. Indeed, the one with Javelin have a 3+ save that makes them more resistant than your usual chaff, 12″ of flying movement, the ability to charge from 18″ and roll 3 dice instead of 2 and even an 18″ shooting attack, that while not being great, it is still a pain in your enemy flanks.

Stormdrake Guard
Stormdrake Guard

The Stormdrake Guard are part of the last Stormcast release. They become battleline if the general has the Draconith or Stardrake keyword (basically read Knight-Draconis, as the other options are not great choices for a general).

They are the only non-hero monster of the army and have a natural protection against magic (ignore the effects of a spell or endless spell on a 4+). Their weapon loadout is similar: the lances’ advantage is when they charge becoming -2 rend and 2 damage. But otherwise, the Warblade is much more reliable.

Add to this 12″ flying movement, 9 wounds that makes them eligible for the Cover rule (+1 save on top or behind a terrain feature), the monster keyword that allows them to count as 5 models while contesting an objective, a shooting attack that can do a random amount of mortal wounds, move and charge in your hero phase once per game and the ability to slain an enemy model each combat phase after all their attacks, and you can understand why this unit is a clear favourite for the hammer role (and the third most used Stormcast Eternals unit).

Vanguard-Hunters
Vanguard-Hunters

From the most used to the least-used we have two models from the third Stormcast wave, the one linked to the Vanguard Auxiliary Chamber: the Vanguard-Hunters and the Vanguard-Palladors, both battlelines in an Astral Templar army. They are meant to be skirmishers, with high mobility and both shooting and melee potential. While they are not terrible, there are better options. Unless you like Astral Templars and the Vanguard units, that are definitely aesthetically appealing.

Another rare sight on battlefields are the newer Vigilors, good archers, but again, they suffer from competition, especially from the Vanguard-Raptors and, in some way, the Judicators. Their perk is to inflict a +1 to hit advantage to any unit attacking the one just shot by the Vigilors.

Wizards and Priests in Stormcast Eternals

Stormcast Eternals can rely on Sigmar to answer their prayers. Translocation that allows teleporting a unit, and Bless Weapons that makes exploding hits on a 6 are good choices, but don’t forget the universal enhancements like Curse. The universal Command Trait High Priest allows rerolling chanting rolls.

The Stormcast priests are: Knight-Relictor, Lord-Relictor and Lord-Veritant

Averon Stormsire and his Cursebreakers
Averon Stormsire and his Cursebreakers

On the other side there is a plethora of wizards in Stormcast armies. If you choose a Stormkeep, you can then have access to some really good wizards from Cities of Sigmar roster. Some interesting spells include Celestial Blades (for a +1 to wound), Thundershock (-1 wound in range) and of course the universal Flaming Weapon (+1 damage). The universal Command Trait Master of Magic allows rerolling casting, dispelling and unbinding rolls.

Krondys is a double caster with an innate +3 to cast (degrading as he gets wounded). Aventis Firestrike is another double caster.

And here is the list of all other wizards in the army:

  • Astreia Solbright
  • Averon Stormsire
  • Knight-Arcanum
  • Knight-Incantor
  • Lord-Arcanum
  • Lord-Arcanum on Celestial Dracoline
  • Lord-Arcanum on Gryph-Charger
  • Lord-Arcanum on Tauralon
  • Lord-Exorcist.

Other units in Stormcast Eternals

The Celestar Ballista is a War Machine and the only unit with the role of Artillery in this army. As such they can benefit from a Lord-Ordinator providing a +1 to hit bonus. It has two different shooting attacks: one more precise and with longer range, and one with 2D6 attacks at a shorter range. You can choose which one to use every turn.

Aetherwings
Aetherwings

The Aetherwings are cheap scout units, you are not going to use them for anything else than threatening abandoned objectives and the +1 to hit they provide to Vanguard-Raptors shooting attacks. The latter is really beneficial to an army focussing on missiles threats, as Vanguard-Raptors are definitely the bread and butter.

The Castigators are a missile unit from the Sacrosanct chamber. They can increase their rend to -2 or improve their to hit roll. They are actually quite performant, but suffer from a roster with many other options available and not being battleline.

The Evocators, while not being wizards, are still able to cast a spell that can buff other Sacrosanct or Redeemer units. Multiple units can cast this same spell bypassing the core rules limitation. Their other trait is the ability to inflict mortal wounds each combat phase after they attack, that makes them extremely dangerous. There are two versions, one on foot and one more agile, the Evocators on Celestial Dracolines, that in addition can reroll charge rolls.

Gryph-hounds
Gryph-hounds

The Gryph-hounds are Stormcast’s most famous pets. Omnipresent in every story and represented in many models (the Knight-Judicator can even summon a unit of two to his aid) are simple cute bird-dogs. Their main use is protection for shooting armies against enemy units being deployed or summoned near the missile units. Indeed, any enemy unit should appear in range of the Gryph-hounds, would have to witness up to 3 shooting units discharge their volley upon them.

Praetors are Stormcast bodyguards, able to redirect and even absorb wounds otherwise destined to a Hero.

The Stormstrike Chariot is the first chariot to have been released in a while for Age of Sigmar (previous models predated the new game) and its main perk is the impact damage after a charge. It can be assembled with either a bow (for extra shooting attacks) or with a spear (for a -2 rend melee weapon).

Vanguard-Raptor with Longstrike Crossbow
Vanguard-Raptor with Longstrike Crossbow

The Vanguard-Raptors are the core of any Stormcast shooting army. There are two profiles, those with Longstrike Crossbows and those with Hurricane Crossbows. The Longstrike are much more efficient with 30″ range, -2 rend and mortal wounds on a 6 to hit. They can go through any armour with ease, and they synergise well with Aetherwings that can bring them to 2+/2+ and Gryph-hounds that allow them to shoot in the enemy turn if threatened. The Hurricane have exploding 6s and are not a bad weapon, especially against with light-armoured units thanks to their increased attacks, but they don’t have the same damage potential.

As the most representative army in Age of Sigmar, Stormcast Eternals have a plethora of Warhammer Underworlds warbands that can be used either as alternative models for heroes and unit champions, or as a single unique unit with debatable rules.

The list of these units is the following:

Endless Spells, Terrain and Start Collecting for Stormcast Eternals

Endless Spells for Stormcast Eternals
Endless Spells for Stormcast Eternals

Stormcast do not have a faction terrain but were one of the first armies to get Endless Spells (together with Nighthaunt). The Celestian Vortex provides mortal wounds and a -1 to hit penalty to enemy shooting units. The Dais Arcanum improves a wizard movement and gives minor buff like an extra unbind per turn. The Everblaze Comet can inflict mortal wounds on a 10″ radius and a penalty to cast to any wizard in range. This last example is probably the only interesting endless spell available to this army, outside of the generic ones.

Stormcast Eternals have been at the forefront of every Age of Sigmar release so far, and the third edition does not make an exception. You can see our review of all AoS 3.0 starter sets here.

Stormcast Eternals Start Collecting

The Thunderstrike Brotherhood is the last surviving Start Collecting for the Stormcast. The old one about the Vanguard Chamber has since been discontinued and there’s no box set yet for the Sacrosanct Chamber (that was the starter set of the second edition). The Thunderstrike is the collection of one half of the original first edition starter set and is the only way to obtain Vandus Hammerhand/Lord-Celestant on Dracoth and the precious Lord-Relictor, one of the best on-foot heroes of this army. The box contains also 10 mono-pose Liberators with 2 Primes but no Grandweapons, all with one-hand weapon and shield, 3 Prosecutors with Celestial Hammers (no alternative weapon profiles) and 3 Retributors, none with the Starsoul Mace and not enough to have a full 5-men unit.

Overall, it’s not a bad purchase, even if it contains the oldest Stormcast miniatures ever produced, but you are paying a hefty price for sub-optimal choices. The Lord-Relictor, however, is worth at least a thought.


Tactics and Final Verdict on the Stormcast Eternals Army Guide

Stormcast Eternals are one of the most beginner-friendly armies available in Age of Sigmar. While this statement is overall true, we need to consider different aspects of it as well.

First of all: if you are just starting, collecting your first 2000 points of Stormcast is easy and relatively cheap thanks to the various starter sets, discounted boxes available from time to time and general availability of these models.

Obtaining 2000 points of a competitive army, can be trickier and would most likely use a subset of all units available, making it more expensive and a bit more repetitive when painting the same models over.

If you are a collector, then this army is a nightmare: there are more than 70 units and many limited-edition miniatures to scour on the second hand market (as they are not produced anymore). Even finding a list may be tricky, the Knight-Questor for example had various releases with different names and the Knight-Incantor (currently unavailable), had different versions including one available only on a 1£ magazine and one on the Hachette Partworks Mortal Realms series.

If you want to get into the competitive side fast, it can quickly become a black hole and you may get confused. The idea of a Stormcast army is that you start slowly building your army, learn the rules, build on synergies, practice your painting skills and only then expand on the core of matched play.

There are also different ways to play this army, as there’s so much variety, with many units available to play different roles depending on the preferred playstyle. The most infamous way that had some good results during AoS 2.0 and is still a viable option, is the one focussed on shooting attacks, also friendly called Shootcast. This army rotates around powerful missile options that can project your power level anywhere on the battlefield, usually including a number of Vanguard-Raptors armed with Longstrike Crossbow, some cheap Aetherwings that you can use as screen in the worst-case scenario and Judicators as good battleline options.

Then there is the “Hammertime!” type of army with strong high-damaging units like the Stormdrake Guard and the Fulminators. The dragons in particular are some of the most popular units at the moment, together with a good screen made of Liberators or Vindictors. The playstyle here is clear: hit hard and fast, rinse and repeat. Use your concentrated numbers on objectives (Stormdrake count as 5 models each, Fulminators as 2 and Redeemers in a Stormkeep army 3) and wherever you don’t have enough numbers, you can use your top units to create a breach in enemy lines.

Of course those two are the extremes, in between there are mixed armies, with a bit of Vanguard-Raptors and a bit of Stormdrake Guard, but there are also other useful units. Despite Krondys bonuses, Stormcast are not great when competing in magic, but they still have few goods spells and wizards. They even have priests, meaning you literally have any kind of role you could wish for (including an artillery piece).

Where things get complicated is the choice of leaders. With more than 30 heroes, there are of course some that are more interesting than others. Some of the best options include the Lord-Relictor, a little priest but really resilient that can take buffs easily and can even become a wizard to maximise his efficiency, the Knight-Incantor, a wizard with a free unbind per game and a spell that buffs run and charge rolls and of course the Knight-Draconis, one of the favourite options as a general.

The Knight-Draconis is a powerful heavy-hitting hero, with high movement and the ability to fly and to ignore spell effects on a 4+. He can also choose a mount trait and, if equipped with an Arcane Tome to make him a mobile wizard, even a spell.

If you need a hero that can hit even harder and with even greater flexibility (can be set up in reserve also in a Stormkeep army) then the Celestant-Prime is your guy. Keep him in reserve until the third battle round and then deliver Sigmar’s wrath upon his enemies.

If you are looking at Hallowed Knights stormhost, then Gardus is definitely the ideal leader to include in your roster, thanks to his 5+ ward on a 12″ range. Hallowed Knights allow Redeemer units to fight even if they have been killed, so you are less worried about the sequence you pick your units to fight.

Remaining on the stormhost topic (Stormcast subfactions) they are mostly ok, their buff being usually minor, the worst one probably being the Anvils of Heldenhammer. The most used is definitely the Hammers of Sigmar (who wouldn’t want a 6+ save even if only close to objectives?). A quick note: since they are more niche and used mostly by more experienced players, the top winning stormhosts are actually the least used (Celestial Warbringers and Tempest Lords).

One last comment has to be on the aesthetics. Stormcast silhouette changed in the latest release, for a slimmer and more defined armour with a nice connection to the narrative. What this means in game terms is that you have two different aesthetics depending on the model age. You may like the new visual more than the older but, while it is true you can make a viable army using only a certain generation of models, the most competitive and playable armies contain a mix of units. If this disconnection does not appeal to you, you need to consider carefully what kind of playstyle you prefer and how much the rules are important for the army you play.

Reconnecting to the premise of this section, that Stormcast are a beginner-friendly army but with some considerations, you can easily see now why Stormcast are so good for beginners (wide range, many options, strong units, presence in every phase of the game, easy to collect and to paint) but how they can become more complex really fast (too many options, not all units are easily available, different weapon loadouts with drastic differences in performance, etc.).


Other resources

Some excellent information that we often use from articles like this one comes from YouTube channels like Warhammer Weekly with Vince Venturella, AoS Coach and of course The Honest Wargamer.

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.

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