Shadows of the Retribution thoughts

Just wanted to put down my initial thoughts on Mk4 Shadows of the Retribution.

In short, it looks awesome.



One of my favorite casters in the faction and one I was super excited to see on the list in the Insider last week. Compared to Mk3 he got

  • RNG 14 → 13
  • POW 14 → 12
  • No more aiming for attack types
  • Lost Black Penny or Witch Mark
  • Reload attack type → eyeless sight attack type
  • Stealth attack type → Witch Mark
  • Field Marshal Pathfinder → Pathfinder + Prowl
  • Mage Sight → Fire Group
  • Road to War → Warpath (pretty sure this is just a name change)
  • Occultation → Repudiate
  • Feat gained boosted attack rolls

Overall I think it’s a nerf from his Mk3 form, but only so much as was required for him to work in Mk4. With the smaller unit sizes there was no way he could keep the ability to make 3 RNG 14 POW 14 shots with Blessed; he’d just be deleting entire units of multiwound infantry every turn. Fire Group is a really solid pick though, especially considering the warjacks he has available to him. Overall very happy with him, seems like he will maintain a lot of his core flavor coming in to Mk4.


Oh baby, Thyron got a glow up

  • MAT 7 → MAT 8
  • ARM 16 → ARM 17
  • Blade Shield → Duelist
  • Fury → Battle Lust
  • Storm Rager → Deflection
  • Feat changed from additional die on melee attack rolls and Killing Spree to +2 SPD, MAT, Duelist, Riposte.

He looks incredible. No more trying to cycle multiple upkeeps on himself, Feat is absolutely brutal. He’s a little less safe on the approach but much safer in melee (and he has access to some solid Shield Guards in the form of the Spears of Scyrah). Battle Lust on Ellowuyr units are going to crack armor like crazy. He looks like a blast to play


  • FOC 6 → ARC 7 (CTRL and AAT no change)
  • Gained Battle Plans for Tough, Precision Strike, and Swift Hunter
  • Lost Swift Hunter and Sprint
  • Countermeasure → Mirage
  • Energizer → Tides of War

I’m not sure how to feel about Ravyn. Battle Plans do seem appropriate to her background, so I like that, and Swift Hunter as a Battle Plan has some interesting applications. I’m worried that without Sprint she’s back to being in a lot of danger if she tries to actually go buzzsaw her way through a unit, but Tides of War does give her Repo 3 and she’s up 1 ARC so those are decent trades. Less immediately excited about her but I’ve always loved the character so I’ll definitely be giving her a go

Overall I think the casters look great. Not only are they some of my favorite characters but they all came through in pretty good spots on first blush. Thyron definitely feels like the most improved but again that’s just a knee-jerk reaction; could be Ravyn surprises me.


The jacks are largely unchanged from their Mk3 forms and look very good overall. Sphinx gun swapped it’s bonus to spell range for Energy Siphon, otherwise I don’t see any rules changes on the non-characters. Banshee at 13 points is amazing. Moros picked up Pistol on it’s gun which is great with Dual Attack.

Solos & Units

Solos and units I’m just gonna hit some highlights because a lot of them haven’t changed a ton.

  • All Ellowuyr infantry lost Cleave and traded Parry for Unstoppable
  • Warden Executioners lost Quick Work but gained Set Defense and Dual Attack.
  • Wardens gained Girded and 3 health boxes each
  • Ellowuyr Swordsmen CA gives them Shield Wall
  • Mage Hunter Strike Force and Mage Hunter Infiltrators look pretty much the same
  • Spears of Scyrah lost Duelist but picked up Inhuman Resolve!
  • Souless Escort is only for Mage Hunter units

Overall I’m super excited to get some lists on the table. The whole army looks really solid and flexible and the casters each seem to have a niche. Well done dev team!

Honestly the biggest flag of the army is that it really shines a spotlight on how lackluster Legions of Dawn feels. I suspect LoD will need to get some help in the next annual update, because as of now they have lower POW warjacks (seems odd that the Army with higher base melee POW on jacks got Concentrated Power), Ellowuyr under Thyron hit as hard or harder than Sentinals and Ryssovass, Ellowuyr under Ravyn are nearly as tough as Dawnguard and Ryssovass, and except for the Destors Legion of Dawn is a significantly slower army. Hopefully they get some love in the new year, until then my Ret time is definitely going to be spent on Shadows.


A few other things I and others noticed as well:

-All the Vyre myrmidons are now speed 6. They also kept the buff to RAT 6 that they got a the end of Mk3.
-Vortex Blast is interesting under the new AOE rules. You can pull a model closer then another and help orchestrate which models take the AOE blast damage.

-Oddly, Eyriss (solo) is the only mage hunter without “Pistol” on her crossbow
-Void tracers got a buff in health and DEF and will be fun very interesting to play I think

-Spears of Scyrah got shield wall which gives them access to no knock down

-Mage Hunter Commander now gives the unit “Dodge”

Agree that overall this list is giving us a great set of models that I am looking forward to playing. While I agree that it outshines Legions of Dawn, our previous army still has some things going for.
-Ability to run jack heavy lists with either Helynna or Vyrros, where as Shadows wants more balanced or infantry heavy lists
-Issyria’s feat gives an army wide DEF and ARM fix mechanic and I don’t see anything in Shadows that can really complete with that
-Dawnguard Scyirs are still best answer to deal with lots of “Tough” models


The jacks all getting SPD 6 is pretty great. The Vyre chassis, both of them, are pretty stellar. Also glad to see they kept the RAT bump on the heavies after removing MAT 7 from not-phoenixs.

I was also happy with Garryth, stoked on Thyron, and lukewarm on Ravyn but I’m coming around on her, I think. She does still have sprint access with Narn (who also picked up weaponmaster on his crossbow, nice) and also has point-and-click boosted POW 12 access wherever she wants it thanks to her gun ability thing being really good.

Thyron is just a love letter to anyone that ever liked Thyron. Beautiful.

Nayl looks good with the dispel weapon and ambush giving him lots of utility and less risk.

Eiryss 3 granting Repo to a unit to let them spread out and having dispel weapons seems pretty good.

Voidtracers are cracked. That’s a lot of badass for a 1 point guy. I’m thinking x3 Voidtracers is how a lot of lists might start.

Welcome back, Arcanist Mechanic. Also nice repair buff. Been hitting the repair gym.

Moros can threat about 16" with Garryth 2 and loves the dual attack/pistol combo, so it’s still good.

Harpies are still the same which I didn’t expect. That’s nice.

I think 10 point SPD 6 RAT 6 Daemon is pretty darn neat, but I love all the heavies. Especially love the Sphinx gun getting leech and pistol.

Strike Force being MAT 7 RAT 7 is, at the very least, cool. For 7 points they look alright.

Spears are great.

Swordsmen should like Thyron. No arm buffs in the army is notable when evaluating Wardens but I think they still are useful, and girded is something mage hunters always wanted. Executioner not having girded is a shame. Also 5 points is a lot, but they do hand sidestep out to both units now, and they can push guys twice with both guns instead of chain attacking (damage is pitiful though).

I don’t mind the AFGs inclusion really. It likes a lot of what Garryth 2 and Ravyn can do for it. It shoots pretty hard for 13 points.

The theme looks like a party and I am excited


I think the only thing im “disappointed” with is a slight drop in Sylys’ utility. He’s basically unchanged, but Arcane Secrets is nearly irrelevant. Thyron and Ravyn have no offensive spells, and Garryth likely will be using Witch Mark for casting Mortality.

Ill still take him for free upkeeps, but yeah.

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Here’s the list of assorted downsides, as it were, that I can see. Keep in mind I still think the army rules

Sphinx lost RNG 2 on the big claw. I think PP considers ROF 1 energy siphon to be a very powerful rule, because I don’t think the Sphinx adds up to it’s point cost and the 4 cost gun on the Ghast kinda has the same thing going on, but hopefully I’m wrong

Aeternae lost RNG 2 on its little axe.

Yeah, Sylys isn’t getting his full potential in this army.

No ARM buffs.

A slightly surprising lack of quality shooting. You’ll find no Scythe or Electromancers or Ghost Snipers here. You basically get big bases and strike force

Eiryss 1 is real weird. She’s literally worse than Eiryss 5 (whichever one has Voass I lost count) in like every way and costs the same. And it’s not apples and oranges, there’s kit A and kit B which is just kit A with way better stats and rules for the same cost.

Elara 1’s tiny POW 10 weapons actually went down to POW 9. Poor girl.

Last thing will be a good thing; I am so glad the Spears are MAT 8. Their rework is pretty cool too, I love it, but man I am so glad they have like elite character MAT now.

All in all the bad stuff is very minor, and subjective in some cases. It’s a good day when this is the “bad news” imo


Super flexible army. Definitely shines at range but I wouldn’t discount melee with the ellowuyrs and Thyron. I feel like they definitely deliver better. A lot of the mkiii melee-based factions in MkIV seem to have trouble delivering what they’re selling. The ones in shadow have a lot of durability to get there which is nice.


And they fixed Eiryss 1! That was fast. I realized after comparing them that Eiryss with Voass isn’t actually “faction” anywhere and Eiryss 1 is, benefitting from Ravyn feats and Snipe spells and all that, so -1 PC is probably the correct fix. I like her a lot more already.

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