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But the still younger men, especially the unmarried ones, clamored but up, and the meat wagon removed Miller Treadwell over exist at the same time.
The count's popularity was assured. Within his realm, the laws were kept, and the guilty were punished without mercy. As his family keenly awaited his final breath, Otto swore he would marry his daughter Isabella to a daemon rather than let his hated brother Leopold inherit. Otto had already refused his daughter's hand to every noble in Sylvania, for he despised them all. No man of breeding from beyond the borders of von Drak's realm wanted to marry a Sylvanian heiress, and so it was that when Isabella von Drak knelt at Otto's death bed, she was still without a husband.
Outside, thunder rumbled and lightning split the storm black darkness. Victor Guttman, the aged priest of Sigmar who had been called to shrive the old count, fainted away. Then, from out of the storm came the sound of wheels and pounding hooves.
A dark coach pulled by four mighty black steeds drew up outside the keep. A heavy hand smote the door a ringing blow, and a proud voice demanded entry. The Healing of Isabella Scant days later, word reached Drakenhof that Isabella had fallen sick with an incurable illness.
One of the physicians who tended her claimed her heart had stopped. The new count insisted this was not so. He dismissed the learned doctors, claiming he would care for her with his own hands. Three days later she appeared in front of her folk, saying she was fully recovered.
She was ever afterwards pale and wan, however, and never left her chambers save by moonlight. At first, none of the feuding nobles of Sylvania paid any heed to the commands of the new count.
If this bothered Vlad, he gave no sign of it. The count cherished his tenants as a peasant family cherishes a beast they are fattening for the Midsummer feast. After decades of rule by mad Otto, this new order was welcomed by all save the most paranoid. Mter several months, however, dark things began to happen. Young men and women from the villages began to disappear.
The living dead gathered at the borders of each settlement in growing numbers.
These were small forces at first, and they came after only those who disobeyed the count's authority. If any rebellious Sylvanians escaped the clutches of the Undead, then they quickly fell victim to strange accidents. Only those who had sworn allegiance to Vlad von Carstein seemed immune to these depredations. Soon, the renegade nobles of Sylvania were queuing up to swear fealty to him. Within ten years, Vlad was more firmly in control of unruly Sylvania than the Elector Counts were of the largest states in the Empire.
Some remarked that such was Vlad's success as a ruler he should in fact sit upon the Imperial throne. Mter all, the von Carsteins were an ancient family that could trace their lineage back to the founding of the Empire. Generations later, Vlad and Isabella still presided over the lands, unchanged by the years. At first, few paid attention to their longevity.
The lives of peasants had always been squalid and short, and nobles had always enjoyed vastly longer lifespans. However, when the oldest woman of Drakenhof insisted that her grandmother had been a girl when Vlad von Carstein came to the throne, even the most dim-witted peasantry began to surmise that all was not as it seemed. The spreading rumours drew more and more Witch Hunters to Sylvania.
Those who chose to investigate the von Carsteins were never seen again. Yet worse was to come. The mysterious disease that had first laid low Isabella von Carstein struck other noble families allied with the count. Soon, every castle in Sylvania was home to long-lived, nocturnal folk, pallid of aspect and merciless in their rule. The number of the living who went missing became more and more noticeable.
The temples to Sigmar, Taal and Ulric were closed, the Priests of Morr were driven from the region and the dead were left untended to pile up at the sides of the roads. Grim watch po ts were set up along the border, and few were allowed to cross- either into or out of Sylvania. When catastrophe struck the Ostermark capital of Mordheim in the year , Vlad was swift to act.
A great meteor of warpstone had destroyed half the city, and shards of raw magic littered the ruins. As the claimants to the Imperial throne sent mercenary forces to seize this new source of power, so too did Vlad send dark minions forth into the ruins.
It would be another decade before the strange seeds harvested from that blighted city would bear fruit. Vlad Marches Forth On Geheimnisnacht in the year 20 1 0, Vlad von Carstein revealed the nightmarish truth to the world. The Count of Sylvania stood upon the battlements of Castle Drakenhof and intoned a terrible incantation he had taken from one of the Nine Books of Nagash.
Fuelled by the warpstone recovered from Mordheim, Vlad's magic flowed over Sylvania, coiling through unguarded Gardens of Morr and pooling in open peasant graves.
Across Vlad's lands the dead awoke. Skeletons clawed their way through the peaty soil; Zombies stirred in their muddy holes; Ghouls loped from their crypt lairs to worship their new master. With this act, Vlad von Carstein had thrown down the gauntlet to the Empire.
The Wars of the Vampire Counts had begun. The Sylvanian armies headed northwest. They crossed the River Stir and headed for Talabheim. The Undead force blackened the horizon with its numbers, for each of the Vampire aristocracy of Sylvania led a whole army of Skeletons and Zombies. Perhaps stranger still, the peasant levies of that land marched alongside their Undead masters.
Before the battle, Vlad von Carstein promised the humans clemency if they surrendered, and no mercy if they opposed him. Though fearful, Ottilia's general ordered the attack. Crossbows and bullets cut a swath through the legions of Undead as they crossed the ford, but Vlad's magic reanimated his fallen minions once more and spurred them forward.
Knightly charges destroyed hundreds of walking corpses but still thousands more pressed onwards in an unstoppable wall of flesh and bone. Vengeful spirits and spectral horsemen swept through the Talabecland lines, shrieking and killing, while the never ending army of Zombies dragged down soldier after soldier. Embattled against a seemingly endless horde of the dead, Ottilia's forces were encircled. Vlad led the final attack himself at the head of his Black Knights, while the Wights of the Drakenhof Guard surrounded the enemy general.
Faced with the power of Vlad and his fellow Vampires, the forces of Ottilia were overwhelmed. Many surrendered, but Vlad was true to his word. His followers butchered every captive, and then Vlad used his powers to re-animate their bodies and add them to his growing legion.
As he watched his men executed and then raised up once more as Zombies, Ottilia's general, Hans Schliffen, became so incensed that he flew into a berserk rage. Schliffen broke free from his captors' grasp, seized the count's own enchanted sword from its scabbard, and struck off Vlad's head. Schliffen was immediately torn limb from limb by Konrad von Carstein, most deranged of the count's followers. With Vlad seemingly destroyed, the remaining Vampires squabbled among themselves to see who would take his place.
Herman Posner, Baron ofWaldenhof, finally prevailed. That very night, as Posner strutted at the head of the army, Vlad von Carstein returned.
Warhammer - 5Th Edition - Army Book - Dogs of War
Posner threw himself at Vlad's mercy, but was cut down without a moment's thought. With the army of Talabecland smashed, Vlad turned his attention even further westward, towards the fortress-city of Middenheim.
At the Battle of Schwarthafen, Vlad was cut down by Jerek Kruger, leader of the Knights of the White Wolf, and amongst great turmoil and confusion, the army of Sylvania was defeated. Yet within a year, Vlad von Carstein was leading another army to war. Grand Master Kruger's smashed and bloodless body was found at the foot of the Middenheim spire. The Knights of the White Wolf and Knights Panther were scattered by Vlad's Undead creatures and winged giants that swooped down from the skies.
The soldiers of Middenheim retreated to the city and destroyed the causeways leading up to the gates. Content that the Graf of Middenheim's army posed no more threat to his ambition, Vlad ravaged Middenland to further swell his forces. At every village and town he came across, Vlad offered the same bargain - serve him and live, oppose him and die. At first, many tried to fight the Undead, but all suffered the same fate as Ottilia III's army before them.
Vlad's Undead legion grew ever larger and stronger.
Soon, miles-long columns of refugees fled westward, fearful of the relentless onslaught of Vlad's Undead army. Vlad turned his attention eastward and fought along the Old Forest Road through Hochland and into Ostland. Army after army was sent to check his advance but the result of every battle was the same - the undying legions slew their enemies in a battle of attrition the living could not hope to win.
Nothing seemed to stop Vlad, every time it appeared he had been slain, he returned to wreak his revenge. At Bluthof, the Vampire Count fell with five lances through his body and the count of Ostland's Runefang lodged in his heart. Three days later, Vlad was seen ordering the execution of prisoners outside the gates of Bluthof.
With the northern provinces overrun and their armies smashed, Vlad turned south and made for Reikland. At Bogenhafen Bridge, a lucky cannon shot took von Carstein's head clean off. Within the hour, the cannon crew were drained of blood and the army overrun. The great city was surrounded by a leagues-long ditch edged with sharpened stakes, and the Reik had been redirected into the ditch to give the city a moat of fast-flowing water.
None of the precautions taken by the defenders worked. They did not stop the von Carsteins and their allies for a moment. Great siege engines built of fused human remains lumbered forward, animated by Dark Magic, while carrion crows and blood-sucking bats circled greedily overhead. Vlad gave his usual ultimatum - open the gates and serve him in life, or fight on and serve him in death.
Ludwig, the Reikland's claimant to the Imperial throne, wanted to surrender. Wilhelm cloistered himself within the Great Temple of Sigmar.
Mter three days of prayer he emerged once more, claiming that Sigmar had revealed the salvation of the Empire to him.
That same day, Wilhelm dispatched an agent to the Vampire Count's camp. His name was Felix Mann, and he was the greatest thief of the age.
His task was to steal the Vampire Count's ornate ring. By stealth and trickery, Mann made his way to the heart of the Sylvanian camp. Heart in mouth, he entered the great black silk pavilion where the Undead aristocrats lay sleeping in open coffins. The master thief Mann slipped the ring from von Carstein's fi n ger and fled, never to return.
No one knows what became of him. When he woke, Vlad was enraged and ordered an immediate attack on the city. The Undead army surged forwards under the burning will of the Vampire Count, and great siege towers of bone were wheeled to the walls.
On the towering battlements, Skeletons and Reiklander Swordsmen hacked at each other. Imperial heroes armed with ancient weapons taken from the vaults of the city cut down the Vampire aristocrats, and were in their turn chopped apart.
At the centre of the vast struggle that engulfed the city, the Grand Theogonist clashed with the Vampire Count Vlad. Mter an hour of combat, holy hammer against magical blade, Vlad gained the upper hand, for his foe was tiring and he was not. Sensing that the end was near, Wilhelm charged his foe headlong and flung himself and Vlad over the battlements.
The two fell together, locked in an embrace of death. First, Vlad was impaled on a wooden spike at the wall's foot, and then Wilhelm landed on top, driving the count still further on.
With an awful scream the count expired, for without the power of his magical ring, Vlad at last proved vulnerable.
With Count Vlad destroyed and his armies crumbling, the Sylvanians were forced to lift the siege and retreat. So great were the casualties inflicted on the men of Altdorf that no pursuit was possible. The last casualty of the Battle of Altdorf was Isabella von Carstein. Unable to face eternity without her husband, she impaled herself on a stake and shrivelled to a pile of dust before the eyes of would-be Emperor Ludwig and his bodyguard. Ludwig would have pressed into Sylvania and taken the fi g ht to the evil scourge at its heart but the other claimants to the Imperial throne j oined forces against him, fearing that Ludwig would use his new popularity to secure his claim to the throne.
Warhammer/Tactics/8th Edition/Vampire Counts
So the pernicious lords of Sylvania were able to regain their strength. All could claim to be von Carstein's direct heir, since he had personally spread his curse to all of them.
A vicious power struggle erupted. For more than forty years, the Vampires warred and plotted amongst themselves, giving the Empire vital time to recover from the desolation wrought by Vlad's attacks. Fritz von Carstein was killed on the field of battle while attempting to besiege Middenheim.
Hans perished when Konrad instigated a quarrel with him over who was the toughest and then slew him, cutting his body into pieces. Pieter was slain in his coffin by the Witch Hunter Helmut van Hal, a distant descendant of the infamous Necromancer. It might as well not be included then. Konrad was never that just because he briefly ruled Sylvania.
Mannfred's hero veriosn is not needed. There are enough Von Carstein special characters already. Not a valid argment. Seems fitting. I know MAthias had a bit of a spece issue though. It is not justified in the lore, nor would you invest in the points to make such good fighters into archers instead anyway. If you are quick on your feet and have S5, you're not going to download S3 Bows Not even remotely cost-efficient. Not so much the others. One last thing.
Harpies have justification for two since they have claws on their finger and toes. Well, by opinions are for the most part the same as Rune's, but I will go through them anyway. VC used to have missile troops back in 5th ed, and there are plenty of suitable models for them, so I'd rather tkeep them around. They are plenty weaker than the TK troops. As special units, they could probaly not see much play as you have more interesting units around then.
Also, from a logical stand-point, why would a skeleton bowman be rarer than a swordsman? They are both average skeletons. It's much more useful for the Handmaidens than for a close combat oriented character.
Both Mannfred and Konrad and von Carsteins, so should have that as their base. As Rune said, Konrad became the ruler of Sylvania in a power vacuum, when Mannfred would have also been a Hero choice.
Had Konred still been alive, he would have been a Lord by now. Heck, as a hero, his only point of inclusion would be as part of Vlad's army in a campaign. He was brought back by them yes, but he does not have any mark of Chaos, nor was he brought up in the Chaos wastes with the various mutations that would bring.
I'd rather be fine with skipping the Zombie Dragon as the Doomrider Powers has no effect then. I don't think the corpse cart is fitting them as the "lords of undeath" sitting a rotten wagon full of rotting corpses does nto feel like a very noble thing I'm working on making that workable though.
Adding a Cairn wraith does give you 3A though. Due to their base size, they would also be pretty bad as you won't be able to get in as many models into combat as the harpies can.
Because bows are much, much harder to use than melee weapons? I think that the lack of shooting is a pretty important part of the VC's identity as a faction, and it seems to me that the purpose of the addition of skeletal archers is just to make stuff resemble old editions for the sake of it. In the bestiary descriptions of the vampires it refers to Living hero Swains in the Lahmians and Lance formation knights in the Blood dragons. You could take these references out, but I would prefer if these were added to the rules.
Adding a Swain hero to the Lahmians - Human hero - Immune to Psychology that will take the hits that would otherwise hit a Lahmian vsampire in the same unit infantry only. A note under Blood knights and black knights, if the general is Blood Dragon then these units can use the lance formation. Can I ask as to why the cost of the missile weapons on Skeletons went up, given they are BS2 and can't stand and shoot?
I agree with Roland that Necrach hero vampire should be able to ride an Abyssal terror - seems right up their street. I also see the challenge that Strigoi vampires can use more magic than others, odd though it might sound, I'd drop the lore of death for them, and keep them with lore of beasts and lore of Shadow.
I'd also have the lores of beasts lore attribute affect ghouls and crypt horrors. There is a typo in the Undead rule description on p , or should be of. The text uses male pronouns all over the place, which seeing as at least one fifth of vampires are female isn't correct. Mournguls look very very ethereal Not everything mentioned in the lore is fitting for inclusion in an army book by default.
This goes for all the army books really. I thie Swains fall into this category tbh, at least as a unit. A Swain Hero doesn't really sound all theat tempting when you have access to Vampires either.
Tbh, I'd much rather see a cheap Hero option be made around the "igor" models forgot the name from Mordheim. Blood Knights are not by definition from Bretonnia. The oder of the Blood Knights is actually formerly an Empire Knightly order. It is also very rarely a good idea to toake another army's special rule and co-opt it into another list.
I don't think a Necrarch Hero being able to ride an Abyssal Terror is out of place either tbh. It is not too powerful a beast so I agree on the Strigoi aspect.
No Magic Weapon and Nor armour is very fitting to both models and the lore, but it leaves them severely underpowerd in comparison. They need other buffs to compensate.
The Morngul change came from me bugging Mathias a bit about an Etheral Monster being able to use Stomps. That seemed very odd to me particularly as it doesn't even have legs in this case. It wasn't Ethereal originally from Forge World. Personally I'm partial to the Etheral version of MAthias, but just wanted the Stomps removed to balance it out a little.
Love the fluff, love the lore, lore and fluff should trump the rules if it doesn't damage them, yes a human hero is less than a vampire, but it is cool and fluffy: Would have preferred missile armed skeletons to not count to core, now they are just overpriced.
Prefer your solution to a mourngul - remove the stomps, keep ethereal. The VC list is pretty full of characters as is, I'd want to avoid making any bloodline-specific characters overall not counting the vampires themselves ofc. That text is really just there for flavour. Making them special units would not really do that much though, since there are so many other special units that are better. They are called the "beasts in shadow", so those two lores would kinda make sense in that regard I've tried to change all "he"'s to "the Vampire", but it is possible I've missed some.
They appear in W: TW 2 as well in the new DLC, and they don't really have that see-through ghost-look to them. I did a quick check through the rules section, all "he": I accept that Swains and glooms and strigani will need an extension, the reason I raised the point on swains and Lance formation is that the bestiary description references them, would suggest those references also move to these "extensions".
I accept the missile spam argument, but would like to suggest you could make missile armed skeletons not count towards core, like you have done for dire wolves and peasants.
If we are concerned with missile spam here, why not for empire or anyone else with core archers, if so then the cost of a bow should rise across the board.
The lors on a strigoi I am not really that bothered with, although beasts and shadow would be my first picks. What about my suggestion that the beasts magic lore attribute includes ghouls and crypt horrors?
Appreciate the egalitarian editing. Mourguls, well they float, no legs They also don't look very stompy - so changing the rules to enable the stomp to make sense I think is the wrong move, I'd keep as ethereal and remove the stomp The dregs figures Rune - the mordheim "igor models" would be fantastic super low level hero characters, but I think if other cool extras go to an extension - then these little fellas go that way too. To support Mathias's point on fell bats, the main issue here is base size.
We often appear to overlook base size when working out stat lines and costs but it is hugely important.
A cannon crew could be hit by 3 fell bats or 5 harpies. Note this base size issue causes huge problems for the AoS models squeezed into these books, Orc Brutes etc, point for point when you consider their frontage they are really weak. I think they "hover" a bit, but they seem to be moving forward. In the art, they are not really ethereal looking either, instead having more of a grey flesh tone.
I don't think they would fit as heroes for that reason. I think the not-counting as Core is actually a good solution, as you will then have to compete with special and rare options in all but name, so you are not very likely to do a missile spam.
The "do not count as core" is already well established in the list due to all the mobile, weak chaff etc Regarding the lore of skeletons and shooting, I can't recall exactly where It is stated atm, but somewhere it says that skeletons have sort of a limited range witchsight and hence wouldn't know where to aim after a certain distance. The TK list gets around this with their "homing" missiles though. I like the lore of beast idea as well, but If implemented, I think it would be best implemented through the rulebook.
With the changes to the rules, I wouldn't mind seeing a page with new and generic special rules being added. Feral could be one. I might have some other ideas as well. The dreg models could be used to represent a more "Igor" type hero, or alternatively an amysing special character. I agree with The Rune, If having the lore of beasts affecting ghouls is desired then I'd change the main rule book to have the lore attribute affect "Wild" units rather than have the longwinded description it has now.
Then give all beastmen the "wild" rule, all warbeasts the wild rule and then add it to ghouls and crypt horrors. The Dreg Igor type models would be funny, yes a rubbish stat line but could have some nice bonus's to necromancers in range - a little like chaos familiars used to do in 4th ed.
A necromancer could have an Igor type person, a Von Carstein have a black suited white glove wearing butler called Jeeves - come on - how cool would that be?None of the precautions taken by the defenders worked. Actually a nice option since it's only 2 points more than the standard non-magical shield Vamps can take for an extra point of armor.
Mannfred had sworn a dread pact with the corrupted wraith-wizards that yet served Nagash in the South. Be careful though, because they are Flyers they're also Skirmishers.
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