The escorts of the Honeypot Casino have a strange allure that is otherwise unmatched in the city of Malifaux. Some say it is the way they dress, an aphrodisiac perfume, or even some strange talent. The reality is far darker: they are carriers of Brilliance, an addictive magic that burns its victims inside out until they are slaves to the power that created it.
Beckoners are disruption models: they move enemies out of position with “Lure”, and they can prevent other models from Interacting. Most of their synergy happens with the Brilliance characteristic, which makes them best used with Jakob Lynch (who keys off of Brilliance). In a Lynch crew, a Beckoner’s most powerful ability is likely to be “The Party Never Ends”, which prevents models from losing Brilliance. Beckoners are a solid bet in any Jakob Lynch crew.
The Brilliance that the Hungering Darkness feeds its victims isn’t just addictive; it is also a powerful magic. After a person has received enough Brilliance to build up some immunity but before they have received so much that the Darkness consumes them, they are able to channel the Brilliance within them, allowing them to shape their limbs into weapons. They wield these weapons for one purpose: to taste more Brilliance.
Illuminated are highly durable models with good melee damage. They have Armor, “Regeneration,” and a good healing action. They also have a decent melee attack that deals extra damage against models with the Brilliance Condition. Due to their synergy with the Brilliance Condition, Illuminated work great with Jakob Lynch, but any crew that can take them never regrets having at least one.
The Cherub that often accompanies Lilith is a manifestation of the raw emotions of the Nephilim. While humans mostly know Nephilim for their rage, they have complex relationships, and the Cherub reflects their vibrant and ever-changing emotions. It floats on the battlefield, confusing the enemy and filling its allies with a sense of euphoria.
The Cherub is Lilith’s totem, so it may only be included in a crew that is led by Lilith. It reduces the required AP to Interact for friendly models near it, which can make scoring VP more efficient. It can also Push enemy models with the Trigger on its attack, which combos well with Lilith’s Terror Tots because they can “Pounce” on models Pushed near them. Finally, it has an attack that can render the area around a target model hazardous. This synergizes well with Lilith’s abundance of forced movement as she can Push enemies into the hazardous terrain. The Cherub is an incredibly fun model to use in any Lilith list.
Poltergeists are one of the many ghosts that dwell in Malifaux. They have little control over the physical, but they can send their victims into emotional fits or even drive them insane. Because of this, Pandora has taken a liking to them, and frequently uses them to carry out her whims. It is suspected that she manipulates and torments the Poltergeists as much as they do their victims, delighting in being able to torment humans even after death.
The Poltergeist is Pandora’s totem, so it can only be included in crews led by Pandora. It gives enemies near it penalties to Wp duels, which is fantastic for Pandora, whose abilities target Wp. It can also take its “Magical Extension” action to use one of Pandora’s abilities, giving the crew an extra use of a master-level action. All in all, the Poltergeist is a great support piece for any Pandora crew.
Voodoo Dolls are some of Zoraida’s favorite creations. She links each one to an individual, inflicting upon them whatever harm befalls the doll. The dolls are the perfect tool to manipulate the strands of Fate that Zoraida tends so carefully. Many people have fallen victim to sudden pain, dire poisons, and even flaming death seemingly out of nowhere as Zoraida manipulates their doll.
The Voodoo Doll is Zoraida’s totem, so it may only be included in crews led by Zoraida. The Voodoo Doll’s most powerful trick is the “Hem” action. Once an enemy model is Hemmed, it suffers any damage the doll suffers and gains any Conditions the doll gains, allowing Zoraida to torment her enemies from afar like the Voodoo master she is. Zoraida can also summon the Voodoo Doll, and it can take the ”Hem” action immediately upon being summoned. Players using Zoraida will definitely want to terrorize their opponents with a Voodoo Doll.
There is deep magic in Malifaux. Not the rudimentary manipulation of elements that the Arcanists practice but rather a connection to Malifaux itself. This magic can be made manifest in the form of a totem called the Primordial Magic. If a Neverborn is daring enough to call such a creature, it can manipulate the very strands of Fate.
The Primordial Magic is the general Neverborn totem, and it may be included in any Neverborn crew that does not already contain another totem. It provides “Rush of Magic”, which allows its controller to draw an additional card in the draw phase before discarding a card. Since it is a cheap model, it is almost worth it for this ability alone, but it can also count as a Scheme Marker when scoring VP and prevent enemy models from taking Interact actions. For any Neverborn crew not already using a totem, Primordial Magic is always a solid addition.
There are many strange creatures that live their entire lives deep in the Bayou, blissfully ignorant of humanity’s encroachment into Malifaux. Silurids would have remained there, silent and hidden, but there are those among the Neverborn strong enough to call Silurids to their side. The creatures are useful infiltrators, leaping silently and fighting fiercely with their talons and claws.
Silurids jump around the board achieving objectives or tying up enemies. They have “Leap”, which is one of the most impressive movement abilities in the game, and they can use it to great effect escaping combat, getting into position to score VP, or just getting into range to attack. Their “Perfect Camouflage” ability keeps them safe before they have activated, giving enemies that target them penalties to shooting and charge attacks. A Silurid is a worthwhile inclusion in any list.
Sorrows are spirits of despair and depression. They are drawn to tragedy, feeding off the hopelessness of their victims until they lack the will to live. Even in the middle of a fight, there are those who will simply lie on the ground and accept death thanks to the manipulation of a Sorrow.
Sorrows are largely passive models. Their abilities can make enemy models that activate or fail Wp duels near them suffer damage. They are Incorporeal, making them difficult to damage with anything other than Ca actions, and they can use their “Misery Loves Company” action to get close to the enemy. Of course, they aren’t entirely passive; their “Doldrums” action can Paralyze the enemy, which is very powerful and will disrupt any crew! Sorrows work particularly well with Pandora.
The Terror Tot is the first stage of the Nephilim life cycle. Although they are small in stature, they have fast claws and don’t back down from a fight. Most humans can deal with a single Tot, but they often travel in packs, bringing down weary travelers in a torrent of teeth and claws. Of course, if they have to, they can always call in their bigger brothers and sisters, who are rarely far away.
Terror Tots are the cheapest Nephilim models, and they often make up the core of a Nephilim crew. They are excellent objective grabbers as their “Sprint” action allows them to get up field quickly and their relatively high defense keeps them safe. They also have the “Pounce” ability, allowing them to attack enemies Pushed near them, which combos well with many of the other Nephilim.
Waldgeists are malevolent creatures of the forest, often dwelling in lands that have been devastated by humanity. They wrap their thick roots around any who would threaten their home, detaining their victims and killing them when necessary. They are difficult for other Neverborn to call upon, but when they can be brought to bear, they are a force to be reckoned with.
Waldgeists’ high Armor makes them very difficult to kill. They can also create Tree Markers to hamper the enemy’s maneuvering and to give friendly models something to hide behind. Although they are slow, they can be solid disruption pieces, with their Triggers Slowing enemies or hampering enemy movement. While in severe terrain (which includes their Tree Markers), their melee range is an impressive 4 inches, allowing them to engage enemies more effectively and tie them down.
The adolescents of Nephilim broods are known as Young Nephilim. They sport thick wings and claws like their larger brothers and sisters, but they stand barely taller than a human. Like all adolescents, they delight in trying out their new-found abilities, swooping out of the skies and trying to out-do each other with both combat and cunning.
Young Nephilim bridge the gap between Terror Tots and Mature Nephilim. They are the standard Nephilim foot soldiers. They have flight to help them maneuver over terrain and a decent melee attack; this combination allows them to swoop in and wreak havoc on your foes. They can also gain Fast if an enemy is killed near them, and they have a Trigger to take extra melee attacks. Young Nephilim are a great mid-range damage dealer for any crew.
The Scribe is Lucius’s personal assistant. He files Lucius’s papers, fetches his pens or sealing wax, and generally takes care of the everyday trivialities that are below Lucius’s pay grade. He is a shadow by his master’s side, and few who visit Lucius even give him a second glance. But he notices them, carefully documenting any oddities his master may find useful.
The Scribe is Lucius’s totem and may only be included in crews he is leading. He boosts the Df of other friendly Mimics near him (including Lucius). He can also give the Red Tape Condition to enemy models. This causes them to suffer penalties when targeting Minions and Mimics, models that feature prominently in any Lucius crew. Finally, The Scribe can remove Conditions from Lucius, which is always a useful ability to have on hand. If you find Lucius needing a cheap utility piece, The Scribe is an excellent choice for your crew.
The Hungering Darkness suffuses its victims with Brilliance, making them crave more and more. Eventually, the Darkness feeds, draining its victims and leaving Depleted behind. These husks of humanity wander the streets, so filled with Brilliance that they can intoxicate any who happen to be too close when they finally, mercifully, die.
Depleted are incredibly hard to kill for their cost, combining high Wounds with great defensive abilities. This allows them to hold points on the board easily (though they can’t Interact) and disrupt enemy plans. When they are killed, nearby models suffer damage and gain Brilliance. They can also gain additional movement by pushing to models with Brilliance. Due to their interaction with Brilliance, they work particularly well with Jakob Lynch, but any crew that needs a sturdy, cheap model can make good use of a Depleted.
Daydreams are products of The Dreamer’s imagination. While Lord Chompy Bits and the other Nightmares keep The Dreamer company at night, Daydreams are his playmates during the day. Other children aren’t as much fun, and The Dreamer’s power makes these imaginary friends far more real than they have any right to be.
Daydreams are The Dreamer’s totems and may only be included in crews led by him. The Dreamer may hire up to three Daydreams. The Dreamer can summon these totems cheaply and easily. They are excellent utility models, reducing the Wp of nearby enemies, moving friendly Nightmares, and sacrificing themselves to make The Dreamer’s summoning more effective. Any crew led by The Dreamer will be glad to have a few of these models around.
Collodi’s wagon contains a collection of elaborate wooden Marionettes. Each one is constructed with wood, cloth, and blood and then bound with the soul of a child. These Marionettes retain a shadow of their original personality, and Collodi chooses their roles carefully. When he leaves his wagon, he often takes a group of the most aggressive and cruel Marionettes with him.
Marionettes are Collodi’s totems and may only be included in crews led by him. Collodi may hire up to four Marionettes. Marionettes reduce damage caused by Conditions, making them an excellent choice for Collodi’s Personal Puppet Condition. They get stronger when near Collodi, and when they take actions outside of their activation, they get more powerful. This allows Collodi to travel around the board pulling the strings of an army of lethal puppets.
Gupps are the first stage of the life cycle of the Silurid. Hatched into a corpse that becomes their first meal, they quickly turn on each other, consuming the weak. They grow very quickly, usually reaching full maturation after making their first kill. While the young of many species are helpless, Gupps are anything but, tearing into their victims with ferocity.
Gupps are cheap models that are good for grabbing objectives or holding locations on the board. Like Silurids, they have “Leap,” which is an amazing positioning ability. Unlike their elder brothers, they need a Mask card to use it. Their stats and attack are decent considering their cost, and if they kill an enemy and get the right Trigger, they can summon a full-grown Silurid. Finally, they can use “Juvenile’s Wail” to increase the damage dealt by nearby Swampfiends if they die.
Unlike most of the abominations that inhabit Malifaux, Alps rarely attack humans directly, instead preferring to take their victims while they sleep. Different emotional states have a different flavor to Alps, and they will often follow their victims for weeks, causing pranks and disturbances to get the flavor just right before the victim falls asleep one final time.
Alps are cheap, disposable models that excel at giving Slow to enemy models. Any enemy models that activate near an Alp risk gaining Slow, as do enemies damaged by its attacks. Alps can also heal other friendly Nightmares, which makes them great in a Dreamer crew, especially since he can easily summon them when and where he needs them.
Insanity is a common ailment in Malifaux. At times, the collective madness in the city can coalesce and take corporeal form. This creature has earned the name Insidious Madness, and it stalks the darkened alleys and forgotten dead-ends with an ever-changing body. Mouths, eyes, and tentacles all appear and then dissolve back into the chaotic madness as it continues gibbering and whispering maddening truths.
Insidious Madness is incredibly mobile with a Wk of 7. Any model near an Insidious Madness that wishes to Cheat Fate during a Wp duel must first discard a card. This quickly diminishes the opponent’s hand, leaving their models vulnerable to Wp attacks. Of course, the Insidious Madness can also force enemies to take Wp duels. Its speed allows it to approach its most vulnerable enemies and then force them to take Wp duels. Pandora and The Dreamer work particularly well with this model, but any crew that can take advantage of Wp duels will find a place for it.
Black Blood Shamans carry on the oral histories and rituals of the Nephilim. They are members of an elite brotherhood, and they command a respect only rivaled by pack leaders. Their rituals often involve blood and sacrifice, with each Shaman eventually being sacrificed by his students before old age can take him.
Black Blood Shamans manipulate the “Black Blood” ability to the fullest effect. They can damage friendly models with “Black Blood” in order to damage all enemies near the target, and in doing so even give the target some helpful boosts to attack or defense. They also aid in the growth of Terror Tots with their “Bloody Feast” action, which can turn a Terror Tot into a Young Nephilim. Any Nephilim-themed crew should strongly consider adding a Black Blood Shaman to aid in the slaughter.
Stitched Together are walking nightmares. They are leathery bags of rotting limbs and organs, and they are always in need of a fresh supply of parts. They haunt bars and gambling houses, rarely attacking their victims directly, instead offering a deadly game of chance. Of course, they rig every game, so only the cleverest opponents escape with all their limbs, or even their lives.
Stitched Together have great defensive abilities, potentially gaining “Reactivate” if an enemy attempts to kill them and fails. Their “Gamble Your Life” action does an amazing 3/4/7 damage, but, if the Stitched misses, it suffers the damage instead. It can also draw cards and create soft cover to deter shooting attacks. Stitched Together work particularly well with Collodi or The Dreamer, but they are a great addition to any crew. Stitched Together can be risky models to use, but a skilled player will wield them to devastating effect.
Wicked Dolls are manifestations of pure hatred, wrapped in cloth or leather bags. They stalk their victims for weeks or days, causing all manner of harm before pouncing and tearing them apart with needles and claws. Once they are finished, they will use the corpse to make another of their kind and then find a new target.
Wicked Dolls are cheap, disposable models that work best in pairs. They can apply Poison to their targets and increase the damage models suffer from the Poison Condition. They have good defense, which makes them great for scoring objectives, and they can give models bonuses to actions taken outside of their activations. These models work particularly well with Collodi, but Zoraida can put them to amazing use as well.
The Mysterious Effigy is a subtle creature, choosing subterfuge over combat whenever it can. It feels a fondness for the Neverborn and uses its abilities to help them stem the human tide that is flooding Malifaux. Not even the Neverborn know its true motives, but they watch it carefully and accept its aid when it chooses to give it.
Like all of the Effigies, the Mysterious Effigy is very difficult to kill for its cost, making it a great objective-grabbing model. It also allows friendly models near it to Cheat Fate face down, adding a powerful bluffing element to the crew. Finally, it may allow the friendly leader to push out of harm’s way when it is attacked.