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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So I thought I would stop griping about some of the problems I've been having with my ogres in 8th and instead focus on their more lovable qualities... by way of a tactica.
My ogres were rarely beaten in 7th, and they have yet to lose to anyone other then HE in 8th... but I'm still changing over their tactics, so I'll probably edit this thread occasionally as I learn more tricks and get my ogres back to what they were before the rules change.

Part 1- Lords and gut magic

The Tyrant- learder of the tribe
Almost despite his equipment the ogre tyrant is one of the most fearsome generals in the WFB world. Then he can be tooled up into something thats so nasty he can take on almost anything in the game single-handed... but importantly this is not why you use a Tyrant in an ogre army. The 2 best reasons to take a tyrant are for the Ld9 that he gives your army (not quite as important as it used to be, but still huge) and the ability to take Slaughtermasters... openning up much stronger magical defence for an army (and making letting you spread your forces a little more easily).
Tyrants have relatively simple tactics: you want to keep them in the centre of your army and send them straight at the nastiest enemy you can see in the centre of the enemy lines. You might want to have him in the strongest unit you have to try to make it into an unkillable killing machine, or to put him into a weaker unit to make it strong enough to take on everything the enemy has to offer... occasionally the tyrant can even leave those units and charge out by himself.

Some builds that I often use:
Tyrant- greedy fist, wyrdstone necklace, heavy armour, tenderiser, luck gnoblar (sometimes takes "mawseeker" but onyl if used with a BSB).
Tyrant- glittering scales, greyback pelt, cathayan longsword, dragonbane gem had to lose the crown of command, instead you could use a greatname like longstrider or mawseeker or just give him a wyrdstone in place of the dragonbane...

The first one is a hangover from 7th, but since his role basically hasn't changed he still does incredible well. If I've taken the gamble and used "Mawseeker" then he has 5W at WS6 T6 with a 4+/5++ (and a reroll)... and if you make him take a couple of saves its pretty unlikely that any magical weapon you were using survived long enough to cause mulitple wounds (a 5++ with a reroll is actually really good). Then he hits back with 5 S7 attacks each of which do D3 wounds... which is plenty to bring down pretty much anything short of a steam tank (which with the new rules he'll need a few lucky 6s to seriously hurt).
The second I use the ninja maneater for... because that is exactly what he is. This tyrant can take on whole units worth of enemies by himself: breaking out of a unit and charging into big blocks of enemies and then just being impossible to shift. WS7 with -2 to hit means that anyone WS3 or less needs 7s to hit, WS4-7 need 6s and anyone with WS8+ still needs 5+... then if you do hit him he still has his T5 and 5W to fall back on (and a 2++ against flaming, just in case a BT shows up). While unlikely to win a combat he is certainly capable of killing enemy characters,while no longer naturally stubborn he should be doing 3-4 kills a turn, so against standard units if he does lose it should only be by 1 (BSB is now really needed to keep him in the fight). Leave him gradually fighting his way through those massive 500pt+ enemy blocks of death while you manouver to get into the flank and he should be quite happy.

Slaughtermasters... the art of cooking
So gutmagic may well have lost its sting with the change to the new rules... but that doesnt mean that ogre players shouldn't take Slaughtermasters. In fact, I think there is even more reason to take one now then we used to have.

Slaughtermasters have several important factors: they have a 12" buff range meaning that you are much more able to cover a whole army with 1 caster then with butchers, they have that all important arcane item slot and they give +4 to all dispel attempts. That last one is nearly reason to take one all by itself.
A Slaughtermaster's increased casting range means he can reliably cover 3 units of ogres at a time: his own and the 2 to either side. In an edition where you are unlikely to have many more then 2-3 units of ogres in standard sized games this is great. It measn that you can take 1 slaughtermaster and he can cast any spell you want, to whichever unit you need. His +4 to dispel attempts is almost the equivalent of +1DD per attempt over a standard butcher... which is huge. The sinking feeling when you only have a butcher (or no mage at all) and are trying to survive a magic phase where the opponent has many more dice then you, and a natural +2 or +4 on everything rolled is not a nice feeling. A slaughtermaster should be the first line of magical defense in almost any ogre army as soon as you reach 2000pts.
I mentioned that the arcane slot is an important part of a slaughtermaster... and it really is. With ogres all being expensive we cannot include a cheap scroll caddy into an army... so make good use of the ability to take arcane items and think carefully. Although there are lots of good options around I would advise anyone to have really well thought out reasoning if they aren't taking a standard dispel scroll, the skullmantle (a truly wonderful item), the hellheart or possible an earthing rod. The skullmantle makes all enemies (even steadfast ones) be at -1 for any braingobbler, fear or break tests caused by the unit... which is supurb, while the hellheart makes most enemies blanche in fear and run screaming from their magic phase (though only once) while the earthing rod helps to stop a catastrophic roll of a 1 on the miscast table removing your slaughtermaster (and all of his buffs) instantly from the game.

If I'm not constricted by points for my slaughtermasters there are only really 2 builds I ever think to use:
Slaughtermaster- bloodcleaver, skullmantle and 3 gnoblar thiefstones (possibly a luck gnoblar)
Slaughtermaster- bloodcleaver, skullmantle, talisman of preservation and a luck gnoblar
... although if I dont have the points I try to have at least the skullmantle (and possibly the blood cleaver).

The skullmantle is a game winner in itself and means that you can give people serious problems by sending a quick braingobbler at either nasty flanking unit you are having trouble with (like hydras) with a vague expectation of making them run away or just send the same spell at the enemy general... and with a maximum Ld of 9 against it the chances of a fail changing the game (especially if they dont have a BSB is great). The bloodcleaver means that you can easily recover lost wounds (who wouldnt want that) and having either a 4++ ward save against everything or a 4++ for you and your unit against all magic (including self inflicted gut magic wounds) makes you a very tough coookie indeed.

A note on gutmagic
In general gutmagic isnt nearly as good as it used to be and this is really for only 1 reason: RiP spells can now be dispelled by the opponentin your own magic phase. This means that if you cast trollguts on turn 1 and then charge in turn 2 a sensible opponent will let you waste your dice and then just dispel the RiP trollguts on a 7+, leaving your best combat unit unprotected just when you needed that buff most. For this reason I've been coming up with some new tactics for re-casting magic onto myself... and letting my opponent's cleverness work against them: many are letting me have good buffs early in the game assuming I'll forget about them and they can simply dispel them when I reach combat. Well I'm going to graciously accept that buff, giving me protection from magic/shooting right up until I charge... then just when my opponents think they can reveal their tactic and dispel my buff I cast the same buff at the same unit... leaving some opponents wondering just how mad I am: either they think no harm and let me potentially wound myself again and then try to dispel my buff afterwards (when I tell them they cant since I cast it this turn- light dawning in their eyes) or they use their dice to dispel my re-cast, hopefully having too few left to dispel the RiP that was already in place, giving me the best chance at keeping my buff.

Bloodgruel- just as good as it always was, getting a wound back is always nice. I often save 1 dice for this one and just roll it last... either it casts or I lose concentration, but with no dice what does it matter.

Braingobbler- my favorite spell. Less good with the imporvement of BSBs its still a great spell for its potential. Any unit outside of range of their general or BSB is at a high risk of running away... combine it with a skullmantle and suddenly even general's can be running. This spell is still my favourate way of dealing with Hydras and the like (if out of range of the general/BSB and if I have a skullmantle it has a 44% chance of failing... and if this is the first turn its pretty likely to run off the board).

Bullgorger- not the best buff around, but not to be sniffed at. Excellent at healping you quickly finish off weak enemy units or to help against high T opr good AS. I often throw a spare dice at this spell (especially if unwounded) just beacsue I lose nothing from it. A permanent +1 S that'll stay until I cast something better at that unit or until the enemy wastes some dice in dispelling it.

Bonecruncher- other then the ogre's best way of dealing with steam tanks this spell is really not all that good anymore. It used to be a great way of dealing with enemy heavy cav but has suffered from the twin fortunes of ogres ranking up and no longer being so vulnerable to cavalry, and the reduction in the effectiveness (and so the proliferation) of heavy cavalry. Its still marginally useful occasionally, but I would prefer if I could swap it for the bangsticks D6 S4.

Toothcracker- +1T and stubborn... woohoo, now we're talking. T5 ogres, T6 characters (hell, even T7 Skrag) is a really nice bonus, and having aquick way of getting stubborn in an army that will rarely get steadfast and whose only stubborn units are hellishly expensive is a real boost. Its a bit unreliable though since its almost ridiculous to think it'll last into the 2nd round of combat (unless the opponent forgets to dispel it) and the worst killer of ogres in 8th is the dreaded initiative tests from pit of shades or purple sun. I tend to start by casting this spell onto my slaughtermaster's unit (if he isnt with the tyrant) just to make it harder for him to wound himself.

Trollguts- a great spell, 4++ save for an army that rarely has any armour is a godsend, and absolutely vital in some cases. Can struggle with the new banner of eternal flame but against almost anything else you're laughing (especially against anyone with non-heroic killing blow. Try to keep this spell up as much as humanly possible, especially on you tyrant and his unit: protecting the most important unit on the board with the best buff spell I have.

While buffs are actually unlikely to do anything: the opponent getting to dispel them in their turn with PD before trying any direct damage magic or shooting they will drain dice away from the opponent's magic if they try to dispel them. For this reason gut magic is pretty poor in 8th for protecting you, but can indirectly help you out. I would always make sure my slaughtermaster (or butcher) had at least a 4++ from his self inflicted wounds from gut magic since otherwise you could kill yourself without doing much of anything useful: remember that since the self-inflicted wounds are written into the spells themselves they are spell effects and you do get MR against them.

End of part 1... part 2 and beyong comming soon

312 Posts
On your tyrant build 2...can you use two enchanted items (greyback pelt and crown of command)? I thought that would not be legal. Just wondering.

Great job on the information too!

324 Posts
Thanks, Tim/Steve. As Ogres (along with Skaven) are the only full army (I have several units from those heady days when they could be mercs in other armies) I don't have, this is proving very informative. With Skaven in the Isle of Blood, it looks like this year 's the one where I finish my collection. :headbutt: Looking forward to picking your brain via part 2 and any follow-up.

I've moved the rules discussion on ogre spells to its own thread in the WFB rules section found here
- T/S

154 Posts
Just a question (and a shameless bump to hopefully get tim/steve to update).
With the ninja tyrant build are there any particular units he should or shouldn't be heading for? Also is it worth buffing him with some gut magic when he gets stuck in?

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Avoid units with lots of SCR and a decent character- if you get into a challenge you'll almost always win, but you might not get enough CR to be able to stick around in the fight. Any unit that doesnt have a character is a prime target, especially if they are one of those stupidly large units- eg 5 wide 10 deep or hoard: they wont be able to hit you (often) and will normally struggle to wound, while you kill about equal to their SCR each turn, allows your unit (that you were hiding in prior to the charge) to either manouver for a flank turn next turn or to go engage something that isnt just a blocker.

I might be able to do an update soon- I had a day off yesterday and am not in school next week (I've started training to be a teacher- stupidly long hours) so i should be able to fit in some time.

WFB Moderator
8,248 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
The long awaited:

Part 2- Heroes and Core

Bruisers, the boss's standard bearer
Well I've prety much put it in the title- these guys are your BSBs. Thats pretty much the only time you should be using them in 8th unless you are playing a particularly large game. I would never take them as a pure combat monster since their Ld isnt impressive enough to warrant them leading a unit and their cost will almost always be better spent on core ogres instead.

Having said that that's no excuse not to go to town and have enormous fun with your BSB model. Here you have 2 options, and its not really a choice for me. Either you can give him a magical standard (and prety much nothing else- no magical items, no other weapons) or you can go to town and make him a killer with al the magical goodies.

I tend to have 4 builds that I switch between depending on how agressive I'm feeling (and what my lords are carrying):
214- Bruiser- BSB, Greedy Fist, Wyrdstone, luck gnoblar, potion of speed, warrior bane, HA anti-character
209- Bruiser- BSB, Skullplucker, enchanted shield, other trickster’s shard, HA anti-character- the ogre's version of skulltaker
209- Bruiser- Greatskull, gold sigil sword, HA basic magic defence
and the best till last:
214- Bruiser- enchanted shield, talisman of preservation, heavy armour, luck gnoblar 3+/4++, this guy isn't going anywhere... unless you do what I did and get him killed from the first 5 wounds he took (against S3 enemies and they nearly killed me without me passing a single save).

Yes, the last is very definately my favorite out of these. He's still a bruiser with 4 S5AP attacks so he'll be able to deal with most threats and he can survive almost anything, even giving something like the skulltaker a run for his money (not that you should ever let that happen)... and with all that he's still the BSB, giving rerolls to all Ld tests within 12", which if your army is anything like mine tends to be pretty much everything.
The agressive builds are a lot of fun too, you risk losing your BSB but it is quite funny when your BSB handily smashes a hugely expensive lord without even seeming to try too hard.

Butchers... the cook's assistant

Well my butchers have been in decline somewhat since the edition change. I used to use 3 in pretty much every game I played, but now I tend to only have 1 caster per game. The reason for this is simple- cost. Again, on purely cost basis I tend to use a slaughtermaster instead.
A 2nd caster gives you an average of +1PD/DD per game and while the exttra casting of a spell per turn is nice its rarely worth the ~150pt cost of an extra butcher.
I will normally start most list with a butcher in for basic magic defence, give him some fun upgrades to make him effective and then look at his ~180pt cost and then just spend the extra points for a basic slaughtermaster with no equipment: the extra +2 to cast and dispel (especially to dispel) and the doubling of his buff range is well worth the extra points and losing a few magical items (I normally play 2k so I can rarelyt fit items on the slaughtermaster as well).

Anyway, when I do use butchers these are my standards:
155-180- Butcher- dispel scroll/feedback scroll/hellheart
180- Butcher- skullmantle, siegebreaker

The first is just for basic magic defence. Taking ocasional feedback scroll means people are loathe to use 5-6 dice at a spell because suddenly their bunkered mage lord might go pop, you dont always need to take it either- if it becomes known you often take it people are still retiscent until they see you havent got it... then if they do use a lot of dice, or if they've already miscast and taken a wound or 2 you can use it to try to finish them off (I've used it against a 2 spell dice before, and got some weird looks... what they didnt realise was that I had a 56% chance of taking the archmage's final wound, which would have been game over then and there). The hellheart is one of the best items in the game, but only for ogres... and you have to be playing like an ogre to make proper use of it: blitz foward and use it to crush the enemies magic phase just before you hit them.
eg- if I've got first turn I might march my whole army forward, get hit by the enemy, march them foward again turn 2 and pop the hellheart in teh enemy's turn and them smash them: my opponent has just had 1 useful magic phase, and that would have been at mid-long range... this makes magic reliant armies cry :p
On the second build I'm actually lying slightly... I rarely use skullmantle and siegebreaker since I modelled them onto different butchers, but combining them is the best build I know and I would use it if I could be bothered to rebuild my butchers. If you want just 1 then take the skullmantle- it affects everything your unit does, and isnt ignored by steadfast, which makes it invaluable- it almost doubles the chance of an enemy unit failing a Ld test (it does double it if they are Ld10 to start with).

The Hunter.. is currently away in the mountains
.. leave him there. An expensive bolt thrower with almost no redeeing features. Shame really because he is my favorite character ogre model and I actually like how I've painted him (maneaters still rule though).

Core... cute and cuddly basis of any good ogre force

This, to put it in the vernacular, is it for the ogre army. Bulls are awesome in 8th, changing from being almost useless (in my view) from 7th to being the very foremost unit in the army. The cheapest way of getting wounds into your army a hoard of these guys will crush almost anything put against them, and it isnt too expensive (relatively) to do it.

Unit Size- I normally go for wither 9 or 18, but I know 12 is well liked (3 deep for all of them). You'll have to accept that you'll be striking alost everyone last... so you want to be able to take some pain before dishing it out, for that reason I like the hoard because it can take almost abything most people can throw, but a unit of 9 will mash through anythign that isnt really strong (and 12 will do the same, but more reliably). If you have some points left over always give a thought to adding an extra bull or 2 to your units, extra wounds are always good to have.

Equipment- in 7th ed I always gave my bulls AHW or occasionally ironfists if I had the extra points... but in 8th thats changed completely. The reason for this change is fighting in ranks: you only get a max of 3 attacks from any ogre not in the front rank, so there's no point in spending points to get an extra 2-3 attacks, especially when you lose the armour piercing effect of your ogre clubs. For this reason I dont even think about AHW anymore (unless your running a suicide unit of 3 bulls as flankers/war machine hunters). That leaves the choice of either the standard ogre club or the ironfist upgrade. Personally I prefer the cheap and effective ogre club, but the parry save from an ironfist could be quite nice (I just dont think its worth it).
The 5+ armour save that can be acheived by combining an ironfist and light armour(combat only) really isnt a great option... its very expensive to do and will often be reduced to a 6+ or removed entirely. I've never liked light armour on my bulls and this continues into 8th.

As for command- I run my bulls with standard and bellower but no champ. I dont like the points cost of the champs for ogres. While the bellower is a must (easier rally, swift reform) I dont think the standard is that vital unless you're running a small unit... in a hoard CR is very rarely an issue (you'll lose eventually through attrition, but you should win each round till you do).
The best use I know of for a champ is in case you want to pick up the bonus +50VPs for killing a hero in a challenge with a champ, pretty easy for ogres to manage but its costly to do. Alternately, if you want to run a tyrant with the thundermace you might want a challenge monkey to keep him out of challenges, letting him hit the unit...

Ironguts... tyrant guard, in WFB?!?
If you had asked me last month I would have said that the time for these guys is over, to retire them graciously rather then let them fade away... I would have been wrong.
While you dont really need them for their monster hunting prowess or their ability to smack heavy cavalry around and while their armour and increaed strengh is normally equalled out by the extra numbrs of bulls you can get for their price what you dont get with bulls is the magical banner, and the ability to operate alone.

The 1 item that makes these guys great is the Standard of Discipline. Put it on a unit of ironguts and they have Ld9, so what if they can't use the Tyrant's Ld9.. they've already got it. This means they can head off into the great unknown without taking a Ld penalty, which is nice, but not great. What is immense is what happens if you use them like you're meant to and have the tyrant surrounded by his guard, that way his Ld gets boosted to Ld10 and thanks to the new round of FAQs its made clear that he can project this Ld to other units. Ld10 ogre army... who would have thought it!! It even makes fluff sense, score.

Command- same as bulls really, except that the champ is far better at taking out just about any enemy character (except those damn WS7+ guys) and the standard is much more vital, always give 1 unit o these a magical banner (but that is the limit).

Gnoblars... fast food, in green
Fighters are still just the same as always- a fairly useless, but cheap 'flanking' unit. I always liek to include a unit or 2 just to draw the enemy's eyeline and to have something disposible to deploy early... but between M4 and bicker they just arent fast enough to keep up with my ogres and provide any decent support. If you are playing defensively then these guys are suddenly immense: give them a load of ranks, the general's Ld and a BSB close by and they'll keep most things in combat for the rest of the game, and do it on the cheap... but if you dont play defensively they're unlikely to stay near the general and arent nearly so good a tarpit.
I find they're great if I send them round the flank, away from my ogres, they often draw enemy units away from flanking your ogres as people remember just how many shots these guys can make (though rarely remember that they almost always miss).

Trappers are a unit I've rarely used and dont really know. I suppose that being able to march and shoot might make them a pain, but at a relatively high points cost, needing 5-6s to hit/wound most things and having the possibility of an untimely bicker leaving them in easy charge range of an enemy (instead of just dancing round like other skirmishers could) I just dont think they're worth it.
Another case of awesome models being sadly let down by rules

End of part 2... part 3 on specials and rares will get done eventually.

Phew, finally got round to that.. if only I found academic writing so easy I would be laughing. As ever if you have any corrections (I'm sure I've been stupid at least once or twice) or alternate thoughts post them, I'll come back and edit anything in/out if I think it'll help people learn the love of the ogres :p

325 Posts
Good work T/S, have some rep.
Can't this be pinned/stabbed/stickied(or whatever they called it here), it's a shame when tactica articles just dissapear, so nobody can get help from it.

EDIT: well that's strange, it says I have to spread around more rep before I can give to T/S, but I can't remember I have given you rep.

WFB Moderator
8,248 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
I'm pretty sure there is are no rules to stop you casting mulitple buffs at one unit, even the same one multiple times, but whether or not you should (or are meant to be allowed) is a bit tricky. Personally I'll not use it, but then I tend to be a nice player.... but if I'm playing a prick I'll certainly pull that one out.

I think there is a thread out there that argues this point: here
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