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Army Analysis

Hill Bullock (hbullock%core1@kmail.ksc.nasa.gov) writes:

Skaven can be one of the most rewarding and fun armies to play in Fantasy Battle. At the same time, they can be incredibly frustrating. They are delightfully destructive to others and to themselves. Even more so than Orcs and Gobbos, Skaven are the embodiment of a screaming horde of crazed loonies rushing forward to battle (if played correctly). I have played them for about 2.5 years now, alternating off with Dwarves, fighting mostly Chaos and Empire, so my experiences are slanted by those foes.

General Strategy

The Skaven strategy that works best for me is to charge across the field as fast as I can with large units and overwhelm my opponent with numbers. This would not work as well with equally numerous opponents like Gobbos, but against most others, it works very well.

They have no missile troops to speak of, so why hold back. Even very tough enemy units are occasionally defeated without even one Skaven scoring a wound due to the ranks and standard bonus (remember that except for casualties caused by character models, the maximum number of figures killed is the number in the front rank). Always have at least 4 ranks in your units (except possibly rat ogres) and a unit standard. Also, a 27 point champion in each unit is a must to challenge powerful opposing character models.

The largest single problem with Skaven is their low leadership. Even the general only has a 7! But, remember how I said always have at least 4 ranks? Skaven get to add their rank bonus to their leadership for ALL leadership tests. If you don't take them in large swarms, they won't be around very long.

Skaven Magic

Very powerful. Some feel it is the nastiest in the game. Plague can eat up whole units with a little luck. Warp Lightning is good for whacking isolated characters or whittling down units. I have used Cracks Call to kill demi-god level generals (with a little luck) and seige engines. Skitterleap is great for teleporting a Vermin Lord into the thick of the enemy's formations. Curse of the Horned One can turn your enemies most horrifying critter into a Skaven (just watch the look on your opponent's face). All of them are very effective, if sometimes a long shot, when used in the right situation.

The Skaven specialty items are deadly, too. The Fellblade gives STR 10 and d6 wounds (but wounds you on a 1 at start of turn). There are items to heal up your characters completely, extend the range of spells, and to drive high-flying creatures down to earth.


Skaven have a number of very colorful characters from which to choose.

First, the best. If you can afford him and don't mind risking 600 points on one figure, a Vermin Lord is fantastic. He is near the equivalent of a bloodthirster in hand-to-hand (without wings) plus you get spells and he is cheaper! I have wiped out whole units of heavy cavalry with a general in one round with this nasty sucker; killed greater demons in one turn; and had him held completely useless for most of a game by the Supreme Patriarch casting Crimson Bands repeatedly! The Citadel figure is very nice, too.

Thanquol is an effective grey seer due to his ability to reroll failed warpstone-munching tests. Without him, even if I only chew one piece of warpstone, I almost invariably turn into a Chaos Spawn. Ouch. (To prevent that, you can take the Warpstone charm, which allows you to reroll one failed roll using + or - 1). Add to that his ability to redirect wounds, and he is well worth the few extra points.

Skrolk is valuable due to his ability to actually choose his spells, although he is hampered by casting as a level 2 wizard. His ability to go frenzied and the fact he causes terror makes him very effective in hand-to-hand.

Snikch takes a little care when using. His ability to avoid detection can desert him at the most inopportune time. However, if you manage to activate his power bands in the previous magic phase and charge into most character models, he should do a fairly good job of dispatching them in short order. It is very easy, though, to spend the whole game running him around and not accomplishing very much. Even in the White Dwarf Battle report of Skaven vs High Elves he was misused. They charged him into a unit of high elf spearmen (archers?), where he spent the whole battle; a gross misuse of his abilities.

Ikit Claw is interesting, but I haven't used him very much. You have to take 25% war machines when using him. He is a 4th level wizard and gets to take spells from any deck except Waagh. Also, his spear/pike casts lightning bolts.

Queek Head Taker is a little less expensive than his fellow special characters. He hates dwarves and goblins and must always challenge oppossing character models. This tends to get him killed if he runs up against Chaos Lords and the like. Hi sword is very effective against dwarves (wounds 2+).

The Standard General is not bad, but he is more for keeping your troops from running away than for anything else. To this end, give him the Crown of Command. It will make you army much less liable to run away at the first hint of trouble.

Army Standard Bearer is a must. Your low leadership troops need that reroll!

War Machines

Jezzails are effective, but frustrating. Their low ballistic skill of 3 often leads to lots of missed shots. Hint: Shoot at units/large things at under half range. Their STR of 5 wounds most things, but will mostly bounce off demons and nastier monsters. They do have good range and one well placed jezzail shot can kill a general due to d3 wounds per hit. Their inaccuracy calls for large numbers, but their points cost (30 each) is prohibitive.

Warp Flame Throwers are neat and melt big holes in units, but tend to blow up all the time. I have never made it through a game with any Warp Flame teams left alive. There is nothing worse than bracing your unit for a charge of heavy cavalry, fire your Warp Fire Thrower in attempt to melt the knights, and have the thing misfire on you, blowing a big hole in the side of the unit about to be hit!

The Doom Wheel is basically a one man Skaven chariot that shoots lightning bolts! What more can you ask for. The two tricks are: 1) if the single driver gets killed, it moves randomly (can be a BIG bummer) and 2) the lightning hits the closest units which may very well be your units. You have to get the Wheel out away from the rest of your units.

The Screaming Bell is nice, but it locks you into a grey seer, making it hard to afford the Bell and a Vermin Lord. It needs to be pushed across the field by Skaven, but a nice cheap unit of 30 to 40 slaves works very well for this. Charge in with d6 Str 6 (7?) hits, 3 ranks, and a standard (before normal attacks) and you will be grining the enemy beneath your wheels! As with most things Skaven, the effects of the Bell are incredibly unpredicatble. I have had it drive off the board an enormous unit of Chaos Heavy Cav on the first turn and I have had it kill members of every one of my units on the board. You just have to take the good with the bad. When painted well, this can be the center piece of your painting collection.


The Storm Vermin are decent troops (WS 4, STR 4), but they tend to die easily since they have a toughness of 3 and virtually no armor. They are expensive as far as Skaven go. I usually give them halberds to really make them hard hitting. The trick is to run other units out front of them to distract magic and missile fire. Otherwise this prize unit will get shot-up. These guys (with halberds) are your only duke-it-out chance with heavily armored or tough opponents.

Clan Rats are your average troops. They have roughly human stats. Take a lot of them to push the Bell or to support other units.

Slaves are great. They are as cheap (and weak) as goblins, but get the rank bonus for their leadership. Use them to soak up missile casualties and to tie up powerful enemy units. The rest of the Skaven ignore broken slave units. My philosophy with them is "Kill all you want, we'll make more."

Assassins are a little disappointing. Unlike Dark Elf assassins, their stats are little better than average, so their chance of taking out someone important is very low.

Gutter Runners look nice, but tend to get driven off easily. They cost too much to waste as missile absorbers. Use slaves for that. Still, they are a neat idea. I am going to have to experiment some more...

Plague Monks are very colorful and reasonable effective against not too tough, not too heavily armored foes. They can carry 2 weapons and go frenzied, giving them 4 attacks each! They are a little tougher than normal, but get no armor.

Censor Bearers are just plain nasty. Against anything but really elite troops, they are excellent. They are hard to drive off due to hatred. Their fumes always attack first and ignore armor saves. Watch out human knights! Their censors act as flails and they already start out with a strength of 4. Their worst enemy seems to be their own fumes, which often kills them before the enemy does.

Rat Ogres should be great. They are even nastier than Ogres (stat wise), but lack the ability to use 2-handled weapons or halberds, which puts Ogres over the top. They are fairly expensive and subject to stupidity if their handler(s) gets killed. Should be used mostly for support, although I have played with the idea of a 16 rat ogre unit being the middle anchor for an army.

Poisoned Wind Globadiers are, once again, erratically effective. If you are rolling poorly, their globes will wander into nowhere, or even worse, into your own troops. If you are on target, they will wound anything on 4+. They aren't cheap, so you need to kill 3 or 4 human foot troops each to get your moneys worth. You decide.

You get to purchase rat swarms at half price with a Skaven Army (50 points). They have 5 wounds and can't be broken. Great for holding off Chaos Heavy Cav units until you are ready to deal with them.


Big, deep units. Charge. Cast. Ring Bell. Win (most of the time).

- Hill Bullock

Tuomas Pirinen (longswor@tower.nullnet.fi) writes:


[With thanks to the sadly deceased Shannon. I paid a vast fortune to the Clan Pestilence to infect his Clanhold with the Black Plague. Can`t have competitors you know... Neek-neek!]

Young warlord Kreekish stepped inside the dark cell. Old, one-eyed skaven, dressed in rags rose slowly to his feet, blinking his only eye in the light of the visitors' torch. Once this prisoner had been a mighty, dark-furred Warrior, but now his arms had withered away almost to nothing, and his skin was bald and blotched. Still, he was tall, and his eye glared vengefully from its socket.

"Sraqual," said Kreekish. "Your accursed son defeated yet another army I sent against him. My allies, warriors of Clan Kritus complain that he is too good strategist for the likes of me. Still, I know that it was you who taught him everything he knows about the Arts of War." The Warlord bent over his enfeebled prisoner, brandishing a serrated knife. "Now you`ll share your knowledge with ME or I shall cut you up and feed your carcass to my breeders!"

For a while Sraqual smiled the Dark Smile. Finally he answered. "Yes-yes. I will tell. This was how I won those victories, all those years ago..."


Skaven are a very interesting case. In straight H-T-H, they have advantage over the closest thing, the humans, since their I and M are better, allowing them to charge and strike first. But LD 5, inability to use cavalry and the lack of missile troops swing the balance in the favour of humans. Then again, Skaven cost just 4,5 points... just cheap enough to get the special WH discount of 50 per cent on equipment! The one thing that always holds true about the Skaven is that you`ve gotta have lots of them.


SKAVEN WARLORD, CHIEFTAINS, CHAMPIONS If leading a big unit the low LD of the Skaven isn`t so much of a problem, and since they are good value for points in H-T-H. Your characters are cheap, so you should be able to give them good deal of magical toys.
PLAGUE PRIESTS Close-combat monster! Get them while they are frenzied! Only 73 points! Plague priests are very good value for the points, and it is a rare day that I leave my Clanhold without one. I often give him a Blade of Darting Steel (automatic hits) against the Elves and the like who have low T and armour save, or Ogre Blade (+2 S) against Chaos or such. For extra magical power, equip him with the Liber Bubonicus and grab those Nurgle spells.
VERMIN LORDS One of the most powerful characters in WH, Verin Lords are truly powerful but also a bit problematic. They are pretty cheap compared to mosts Greater Daemons, but that 600 points comes out of your Character allowance...

One good trick is to put Vermin Lord in to a unit of Rat Ogres. This gives him a protection against missiles and War Machines, and he can`t be picked out as target for missile fire.

The merits of the Vermin Lord also include it`s magical powers. It has an access to the Dark Magic deck, and in larger games this is a Good Thing since Skaven have only one deck aviable to them without Crown of Sorcery or such.

Against Chaos he is almost essential since he can beat up practically anybody except the Bloodthirster, and Chaos lacks the War Machines that are very dangerous to this rat.

SKAVEN WARLOCKS These wizards are cheap, but unlike many other sorcerers they are very weak in combat. Also, they can`t use many of the best spells in the Skaven deck. They are good of keeping the winds of magic rolling 2D6, carrying dispell scrolls and (in the case of the Warlock Master) leading units.
GREY SEERS These are your best wizards, and your rats can be served with a Screaming Bell side order.

Grey Seers are as powerful warriors as your General, just as good leaders, have greater resilience and the ability to use some of the best Skaven spells. Thus it is no wonder that I always include one in my army. Very often I don`t buy anything combat-orientated to my wizards, but Grey Seers are an exception and quite often get at least Warpstone Armour or Black Amulet for protection. Their only negative side is that they are truly expensive.

As far as the magic is concerned, try to get the Death Frenzy, Plaque, Curse of the Horned Rat and the Madness from the Skaven deck.


STORMVERMIN Cream of the Clanrats, these Skaven warriors are very unSkavenlike: They are expensive! As the units go, they are your best basic infantry unit. Also, they are one of the three chances Skaven get to field Magical Standard without allies.
Weaknesses High point cost plus low T and armour save. Your enemy will shoot at them with a fury of an ape.
Uses Stormvermin are a problematical unit. On the other hand, they are much better warriors than almost any other unit of rats, but they have other very un-Skavenish trend: they cost many points. Since IMHO there is no sense cutting the corners with a Skaven unit, a small unit is out of the question. I have two answers. First is to simply drop some of the auxilary troops and take a large regiment of the Stormvermin as your core unit. The Ruby Chalice is propably a good buy against opponents with lots of missile weapons, since -2 to shoot is something that bothers even the Elves...

Put all the usual Skaven parabelia of Screaming Bells, Warlords and assassins with this unit, plus perhaps the Black amulet and Banner of Might, and off you go.

The second option is buy some 20 Stormvermin to act as a bait for enemy missile fire. It is not a very good option against armies with very powerful missile weapons, but if your Undead opponent targets your Stormvermin instead of your main unit of Clanrats with his Skull Chukers as he is bound to do, it might save you. In this devious tactic, don`t buy stormvermin any additional equipment (except perhaps halberds) to cut down the cost. Deploy as narrow and deep unit as possible to keep the LD score as high as possible. This is a risky option, but sometimes worth it.

CLANRAT WARRIORS Basic Skaven -- the only real fault is their low LD, but as long as you have your extra three ranks, you should be OK.
Weaknesses LD 5 and average stats.
Uses For their core unit, many people use the clanrats with spears since A) they are cheap B) with spears your rats might even get a chance to fight back! Since they are very cheap, you often find that you have points for an additional unit that might be worth it just to draw missile fire and transport assassins, globadiers and a Warpfire thrower.

Unit sizes should start at 30-40, and can go up to infinite.

GUTTER RUNNERS Fast, strong, well-equipped, expensive...

Their special deployment is very useful since they don`t have to suffer from the hail of missiles as your other units.

Weaknesses Can`t field a magic standard. Expensive. Low T.
Uses The usual method is equip them with everything imaginable, use their special deployment rule, and harrass War Machines, marching units and such. Unit sizes from 6 to 12 should be enough.

The other method I use is sneaky and frighteningly risky: Since Gutter Runners are great fighters, (WS 4, S 4, and 2 A with additional hand weapons) they can be formed into a standard regiment instead of skirmishing and deployed near the enemy. You should be able to charege your opponents on a first or second turn. With assassins, good leaders and wise choise of magic equipment, there are not many regiments that can stand their charge. Of course this option is very costly and can cause you your worst defeat, but it is an entertaining variation.

ASSASSINS Poisoned blades, WS 5, 2 Attacks and a handy disguise rule make Adepts of Clan Eshin very useful rats to have.
Weaknesses Elven and Dwarven elites have as high WS as they and thus are hard to hit. S 4 isn`t that hot against a Nurgle Character with T 6.
Uses I almost always take as many assassins as I can. Good fighters, dangerous against characters and they don`t eat up my character allowance. Though it must be said that when I need more points, the assassins are the ones that go.
SKAVENSLAVES Weak, weaker, Skavenslave... still, don`t ignore them! They are cannon fodder par excellence!
Weaknesses LD 4, WS and BS 2. Need I say more?
Uses If you are playing on a battlefield with relatively few hills, you`ll do well by using slaves as living shields against the enemy missile fire. If your opponent has a nasty habit of using frenzied troops, you can use slaves to take the charges of these very dangerous things. With a crown of command and 40+ slaves you can lock that Khornate knight unit in a futile and endless combat.
PLAGUE CENSER BEARERS If there ever was a good troop type, it`s plague censer bearers. 2 attacks, re-rolls on the first turn, hard to hit, WS 4, LD 10 for break tests, and the poison wind effect. 15 points!
Weaknesses Sometimes an unlucky row of dice rolls can thwart your plans and the globadiers kill themselves with the poisonous fumes, or break regardless of their UM LD of 10. You can`t have a really big regiment since their formation.

Other than that, no Weaknesses.

Uses Try to find toughest possible target for them. On the first round of their charge the Cencer Bearers always cause immense damage, and even after that they tie the enemy up because of the hatred, and the fact that they are T 4 troops and thus very hard to hurt.

They are very useful for their brother Plaque Monk`s also, since they can act as a missile shield as they are -2 to hit. The one problem is to get the unit size right since otherwise they get in each others way an possibly poison themselves. 12 should serve you well.

As a final word, don`t ever forget these troops! They are IMHO the essential part of any Skaven army.

PLAGUE MONKS The initiates of infection and the diciples of disease have T4, ability to carry a magical standard and they are affected by the rules for frenzy.
Weaknesses Low S. Spells wich require armour save are dangerous.
Uses As they give access to Plague priests, Censer Bearers and additional Magic Standard, I always field at least one unit.

With T of 4, they can take quite a lot of punisment from missile fire, and it partially offsets their low Armour save. I always give them additional hand weapons, and if facing somebody with regular bows, like Wood Elves, I consider giving them light armour.

PACKMASTERS/RAT OGRES Rat Ogres are your heavy hitters.
Weaknesses If you lose all your packmasters, the Rat Ogres are history. Stupidity and LD 4 are a deadly combination...
Uses As shock troops since you lack the heavy cavalry. I`ve seen many different units, ranging from a single handler and Rat Ogre to a monster unit of 24 Rat Ogres! I would say that a large unit is better than smaller one, since spells like Death Frenzy are of much more use. But remember that if your unit of 12+ Rat Ogres breaks and is destroyed, it could well mean the end of you. Crown of Command is a good buy to the character leading such an expensive unit.

It is sometimes worth to separate a Skaven Character from one of the regular units if their packmasters get all killed, since characters can act as packmasters.

PACKMASTERS/GIANT RATS Since they are so cheap, they are a good place to invest some extra points.
Weaknesses Of course they can`t beat heavy cavalry. Don`t even try.
Uses There are couple of pitfalls to avoid. Don`t fight opponents with WS of 5 or more, since you`ll hit them only with 5+. Also, don`t take too many packmasters, since the cost of the unit will be too high then.

Giant Rats can fight against Skeletons, Goblins and such, act as a knight-trap with Crown of Command, and draw out charges of the frenzied troops. Remember that they can always lap around their enemies.

POISON WIND GLOBADIERS At 30 points, they are expensive and must be always used for the best effect.
Weaknesses You really can`t use them in their own regiments. They can`t stand any H-T-H combat, and their "Stand and Shoot" reaches only 6 inches.
Uses Since they can hurt anybody, they are a valuable part of any Skaven force. You should always include them in every regiment allowed, for even though the often let you down, their psychological effect is so great that your opponent often uses too much time trying to kill them, neglecting your real units.

Always target your Worst Nightmares with these things since they can hurt even a Dwarf Lord with Toughness of 10.


WARPFIRE THROWERS When these things work, they are deadly to an extreme. Remember that the crew have heavy armour! That 5+ armour save has helped me time and again. If used as their own units (You must be very brave or stupid to do this since they have LD of 5) keep them away from the rest of your troops! They have the worst misfires in the whole game! I recommend using them attached to units.
DOOMWHEEL Against Chaos and other armies with little or no missile power and dangerous H-T-H troops, Doomwheel is almost essential. It is one of the few things in Skaven army that can operate alone, for the Warlock Engineer driving it has LD of 10! Obviously too much warpstone snuff... It is a good idea to keep the Doomwheel on a hill in the beginning of the game, since it gains extra impetus when it rolls down the slopes.
JEZZAIL TEAMS These are one of the few long-ranged Skaven weapons. The trouble is that their LD 5 causes them to run away practically every time there is a panic test to take. They are also uncommonly expensive rats.

They have BS of only 3 so you genrally hit with 5+ on D6. Because of this, choose your targets! Go for knights, Ogres, Chariots and such. Because of their S of 5 and D3 W you can hurt almost anything badly. I recommend targetting anything larger than 10` since you gain +1 to hit bonus. Don`t over-rely on them! They are too expensive to compensate for your lack of bowmen.

SCREAMING BELL As a package, Screaming Bell is cheap: it charges as a chariot, has 4+ dispel, makes the Grey Seer and the Bell Slave immune to psychology and gives them hatred, grants you one extra magic card, plus gives you the random powers of the Bell itself! On the other hand, it slows down the regiment pushing it, can be targetted with missile weapons, may explode if strung with too high note and becomes a prime target for the enemy. I wouldn`t field it against Elves or such since it is far too easy to lose your invaluable Grey Seer, and even the loss of th Striker is a sad blow. It might be a good idea to give the Grey Seer a Warpstone armour when he is riding Screaming Bell. Recommended against assault armies like Chaos.


I avoid mounting Skaven characters on monsters since they often become the prime targets for enemy missile fire. The problems are even greater if you send your Warlord or Grey Seer to face the enemy alone, since the low LD of the Skaven Characters will propably be the death of you. Still, a powerful monster might be able to swing the balance to your favour in H-T-H, and without rider it doesn`t eat up your character allowance.

Rat Swarms are the best buy on this list. They are cheap, but above all, they are immune to psychology and break tests. There is a unit you don`t want to fight? Send couple of swarms to bug it down!


GREY SEER THANQUOL If you want good value for points, choose Thanquol. He is accompanied by extra-strong rat-ogre, is able to re-roll warpstone tests, and costs only little more than normal Grey Seer. Since he replaces the general you can save couple of points in smaller battles. In bigger ones, you must use Special characters to field Skaven Lords with Thanquol. He is pretty good if you feel you must take risks since his Special Blessing from the Horned Rat that shifts wounds suffered by him to other Skaven. Just remember to keep him with units or near them!
LORD SKROLK Need to kill somebody? Lord Skrolk is your rat.

With 8 attacks while frenzied and one of the deadliest weapons in the game, Lord Skrolk really send shivers up your opponent`s spine. He is actually pretty good against big monsters since they don`t wear Magical Armour, and they will die on a roll of 6 on D6 regardless of Toughness.

IKIT CLAW I like Ikit very much since he can take his spells from any spell deck, overcoming the normal Skaven problem of limited choise of magic. He is actually pretty tough in H-T-H and is immune to psychology and rout tests. He also can act as an extra poison wind globadier from the middle of the unit if you don`t fancy your chances in H-T-H, and besides he is not even that expensive. On the down side, he has to take the Storm-Daemon, wich is a good weapon but the wizards really need those power scrolls and such... He also replaces your general and forces you to field 25 per cent of your points as War Machines. I`ve seen him defeat the Undead and the Chaos very handily with High Magic Spells, so think hard about him.
THROT THE UNCLEAN He can act as a extra-strong packmaster that your opponents fear since he tends to snap their necks with his Man-Catcher. Typically dirty trick is to give him a Sword of swift slaying that can really shock your opponents. A good place for extra points, but not essential.
DEATHMASTER SNIKCH One of my answers for too-powerful characters, the Deathmaster will put fear of the Horned Rat to the hearts of your opponents. Give him the Black Amulet and put him on the orders of terminating everything non-Skaven. All in all, I can`t recommend him highly enough. There is almost no easy way to take the Deathmaster on.
QUEEK HEAD-TAKER Against the Dwarfs and Orcs+Goblins, I try to always include this very characterful creature. Mind you, a Chaos Lord will usually have him for lunch in challenge match, and you might need that Warpstone Armour somewhere else.


Skaven have access some of the best magic items in whole game, so read the Skaven book through and through.

Crown of Command is compulsory, don`t even think whatever you take it or not, just take it. The only problem is where to put it.

Weeping Blade is one of the most point-cost effective things you can get and should always be a high priority.

Warpstone Armour is good, since it can give an unmodified save even to the wizards of your army.

Since your army generally includes large units, a things like Skavenbrew work very well.

Because it is very, very hard to rally fleeing Skaven, the Horn of Urgok is a good buy. Also, since you don`t want to roll against that lousy Ld of yours, you should consider Sword of Fortitude.

- Longsword


Stephen Muray (Stephen.Muray@menger.eecs.stevens-tech.edu) writes:

One of the nastiest ways to ruin your opponent's day is to have a large regiment of Rat Ogres led by Throt the Unclean. Give him Skavenbrew as a second magic item, and with the +1 reroll, the odds of something nasty happening grow exponentially.

Savor the look on your opponent's face when your Rat Ogres are frenzied or have double movement and attacks!

Tuomas Pirinen (longswor@tower.nullnet.fi) writes:

Take as many jezzails and warpfire-thrower units with poison wind globadiers... NOT. No, even I can`t make a defensive Skaven army. Offense is the way to go. But the problem is that very few rats can gnaw, say a large unit of Dragon Ogres, to death.

Because of this you have to resort to very low tricks. Then again, you`re a Skaven Lord, so dirty tricks are your life`s blood!

Challenge opposing characters to single combat while your Warlord hacks away his Rank-and-File.

Take Heart of Woe to the leader of your Gutter Runner unit and watch the expressions of your opponents.

Take some nasty allied cavalry and throw your opponent off-balance. The list goes on...

Remember, keep your units large. Missiles will cut your numbers, but if you have enough rats, you can take them. With magic items, take ones that protect the whole unit, since they are most effective then. Be it also known that all weapons that include warpstone are classified as magical.

Here then are some of my suggestions for the overall tactic.

THE CHITTERING HORDE This is the famed "all or nothing" tactic. Concentrate everything you`ve got on 1 big unit. If you want to make an impression on your enemy with sheer numbers, then take Clanrats. I`ve seen a unit of 200 Clanrats once! Other troops should be there only to support your main unit. The magical items you need are Crown of Command, Amulet of Obsidian, the Talisman of Ravensdark, Skavenbrew and perhaps the Battle Banner. Give your characters the best possible weapons like Slayer Swords, Frostblade, Fellblade and so on. Just watch out for those goblin units with Crown of Command and Warbosses with the Heart of Woe. Ring of Corin should serve you well.
FURY OF THE HORNED RAT Skaven army has some very powerful characters and special troops, and sometimes I like to go for the quality and not the quantity. With a Vermin Lord leading the attack of the Gutter Runners, Rat Ogres, Stromvermin and Plaque Monks with Cencer Bearers, you have every possibility to defeat anybody in H-T-H. This works best against opponents who dislike missile troops and War Machines, for losing many of these valuable troops before actual combat spells D-E-F-E-A-T.
THE CLAWS OF DECAY This is my favourite tactic. Since Skaven get many cheap and effective sacrificial troops, I use them to the best effect:

Rat swarms and Skavenslaves plus Giant Rats will tie up the most dangerous parts of the enemy. Meanwhile, using their local superiority, the actual regiments defeat the weaker parts of the enemy force. While your opponent`s heavy cavalry struggles with your 100+ Slaves who just happen to have the Crown of Command... This is definitely a thinking man`s tactic, since a mindless and destructive charge is much easier to master. Then again, it is very difficult to defeat a Chaos or competently led Dark Elf army without any tricks.

The eyes of Kreekish glittered. "Fool-fool!" he cried. "Now I shall vanquish your Clan and bring the head of your son for my breeders to gnaw! You have hastened your own Doom!"

Triumphant, the young Warlord left his prisoner and hurried off to muster his army.

"Yes-yes," whispered Sraqual. "I have told you everything. Everything but that your allies, Clan Kritus, have secretly pledged alliance to my son. It's your fate that is sealed." He fell silent in his unholy joy.


Last Updates
21 June 1996reorganized
23 April 1996reformatted
7 April 1995added Stephen Muray on tactics
Comments or corrections?