Following last week’s announcement that the salt-flavoured undead of the Vampire Coast would be Total War: Warhammer II’s next DLC faction, developer Creative Assembly has revealed their Legendary Lords and, now, their army roster. We’ve gathered all the details below.
Many in the community predicted the inclusion of Luthor Harkon, Count Noctilus, and even Aranessa Saltspite, but there’s one Legendary Lords that no one could’ve seen coming, because she’s an entirely original creation. Each lord looks like they will interact with the new roster in clever ways, as per the Tomb Kings DLC, while the army itself seems to be one of the most eclectic in the game.
As discussed on the reveal stream, it’s very heavily focused on gunpowder units – even more so than the Empire or Dwarfs. There is also a mechanic under which the Vampire Coast’s shooting will get weaker with successive volleys, which should force a unique response from any opponent: baiting and screening shooting attacks with fodder units will be necessary. Like the Vampire Counts, the Coast does not lack for fodder of its own, and has plenty of unique monsters. But there’s a distinct lack of cavalry and armoured heavy infantry – Depth Guard seem to be more damage-oriented.
Vampire Coast Legendary Lords
Sired long ago by Abhorash, the progenitor of the Blood Dragon bloodline of martial vampires, Luthor Harkon has plundered the Lustrian coast for centuries. He is the founder and governor of the Vampire Coast, and will accordingly take over the existing Vampire Coast faction when the DLC lands. Driven mad and cut from the Winds of Magic by a magical trap set by the Lizardmen, he cannot cast any spells at all.
To compensate for this, he is highly resistant to magic damage and confers this resistance to nearby friendlies. He can also fire his pistol on the move, is fairly quick, moderately durable, and an excellent duelist.
The antagonist of the naval-themed tabletop game Dreadfleet, Noctilus was once Nyklaus von Carstein of Sylvania, but was drawn to the maelstrom at the heart of the ocean to feast upon its dark magic. He cast a magical ritual to transport himself and his castle to the Galleon’s Graveyard – the Warhammer equivalent of Davy Jones’ locker – and was there reborn as Count Noctilus.
Noctilus is a tank: he’s slow for a vampire, but has high mass and armour, can regenerate lost HP, and has a Necrofex Colossus as a mount option. He also comes with a polearm, making him effective against armoured or large units, and casts spells drawn from the Lores of Vampires and Shadow. His start position is the Galleon’s Graveyard, which has been added to the centre of the ocean, south of Ulthuan.
Another Dreadfleet character, Aranessa Saltspite is one of the most feared pirate captains of Sartosa, said to be the daughter of the sea god Manann. She is technically alive rather than undead, but her vampiric first mates recruit for her crew by reanimating the corpses of the drowned while out adventuring. The rest of her crew are comprised of human pirates known as the Sartosa Free Company, and she starts in Sartosa – which is why the pirate kingdom was recently added to the Mortal Empires map.
Saltspite is lethal in melee, able to tackle blocks of infantry with sweeps of her halberd, which can otherwise challenge armoured and large threats. She’s quick and has high melee defence and physical resistance to represent her agility, but has low armour and HP. She can also pin enemies with her ‘net’ ability.
Excitingly, Cylostra is the first Warhammer character to be created entirely by Creative Assembly (lead narrative designer Andy Hall once worked on Dreadfleet, and we imagine this will have helped secure Games Workshop’s trust, along with CA’s generally impeccable handling of the IP). Cylostra was once the favoured court singer of a Bretonnian king, but drowned in a storm while en route to sing for the Phoenix King of Ulthuan. She starts on the coast of the new world, between Mazdamundi and Morathi.
As a ghost, she is resistant to physical attacks, but is otherwise fairly fragile. She can summon a regiment of undead Bretonnian knights to guard her, though, and is a powerful caster of the Lore of the Deep. She can also use songs to buff friendly units, and slow or damage enemies.
- Vampire Fleet Admiral (male) – hybrid melee/caster, uses Lores of Vampires, Death, and Deeps, specialises in anti-large, anti-armour
- Vampire Fleet Admiral (female) – hybrid melee/ranged/caster, uses Lores of Vampires, Death, and Deeps, adaptable due to loadout customisation
- Vampire Fleet Captain (female) – hybrid melee/caster, uses Lores of Vampires, Death, and Deeps
- Gunnery Wight – ranged support; armour-piercing, buffs nearby missile units
- Mourngul Haunter – armour-piercing anti-infantry, has Vanguard and Stalk, regenerates HP in melee, strong charge
- Zombie Pirate Deckhand mob – come with dual swords, better than Skeleton Warriors but worse than Empire Swordsmen
- Zombie Pirate Deckhand mob (polearms) – the above, but anti-armour and anti-large
- Zombie Pirate Gunnery mob – come with pistols and swords, mediocre in melee but offer massed on-the-move pistol fire
- Zombie Pirate Gunnery mob (rifles) – a ‘sidegrade’ to the above, sacrificing move-and-fire ability for range, accuracy, and stopping power
- Zombie Pirate Gunnery mob (hand cannons) – another sidegrade; hand cannons are comparable to blunderbusses, and deal significant medium-range damage with high knockback
- Zombie Pirate Gunnery mob (bombers) – smaller than other gunnery mobs, can throw bombs into melee on the assumption that the enemy will feel their losses more keenly than you will through friendly fire
- Depth Guard – heavy infantry with a sword and a hook hand: armoured but not shielded (think Grave Guard but more of a damage dealer, and thus less durable)
- Depth Guard (polearms) – the above, but anti-large: use to defend vulnerable ranged units from cavalry and harassers
- Syreens – relatively quick, near-immune to physical damage but vulnerable to magic, deals magical armour-piercing damage
- Bloated Corpse – reasonably quick self-destructing infantry, explodes on contact with enemy or when HP falls below a certain threshold
- Deck Gunners – long-ranged weapon teams with armour-piercing, target penetration, and ‘shield breaker’ effect on hit
- Fell Bats – identical to Vampire Counts’ Fell Bats
- Deck Droppers – a bat holding a rifleman: flying missile cavalry
- Deck Droppers (bombers) – a bat holding a hand canonneer and able to drop bombs, similar to Gyrobombers and Terradons
- Scurvy Dogs – serve an identical role to Dire Wolves
- Carronade – long-range anti-large cannon, similar to Empire and Dwarf equivalents, but can load solid or grapeshot
- Mortar – indirect plunging firepower, strong vs light armour, can load explosive or quicklime ammo
- Queen Bess cannon – enormous range and blast damage, fires in an arc, causes movement penalties to target on hit
- Mournguls – fast monstrous infantry: armour-piercing, may Vanguard and Stalk, regenerates HP in melee
- Animated Hulks – monstrous infantry (think resurrected ogres): first ‘heavy’ unit, strong in melee, ideal to screen for missile units
- Rotting Prometheans – large crabs: high mass and armour, missile resistant, charge defence vs large, but relatively slow
- Rotting Prometheans Gunnery mob – the above, but ridden by hand canonneers
- Rotting Leviathan – a giant crab: extremely high armour, HP, mass, and missile resistance, charge defence vs all, armour-piercing melee attacks, ridden by riflemen
- Necrofex Colossus – hybrid ranged/melee monster: can move and fire, see over most obstacles, and summon Zombie Deckhands
- Death Shriek Terrorgheist – flying monster: identical to the Vampire Counts’ Terrorgheist