Warhammer: Age of Sigmar - Warcry Guide

Last Update: May 26, 2023 1:41 PM


artwork depicting various dark fantasy characters in a battle with the word "Warcry" written across the bottom.

Warhammer Age of Sigmar Warcry is a skirmish wargame set in Games Workshop’s fantasy Age of Sigmar setting. As a skirmish wargame, players pit small warbands of warriors against each other in brutal combat. Warcry is set in the Eightpoints, with each Warband battling to earn their place in Archon’s legion. Most warbands are made up of Chaos followers, but others come from other factions within the Age of Sigmar setting, each with its own goal. In this Warcry Guide, you’ll find details of everything you need to play Warcry, along with guidance on each of the products available and the different forces that can be brought to the table.

If you're enjoying our Age of Sigmar coverage, then you should check out our official game page for it. There you'll find all of our articles on Games Workshops WHFB replacement, as well as our review of the base game itself


Warcry Mechanics?

The Warcry rules are extremely simple to learn and teach and each warband is made up of a small number of fighters. This makes Warcry extremely beginner-friendly and a great entry-level product.

Battles are set up using the 4 set-up decks for Terrain, Deployment, Victory, and Twist. 1 card from each deck is drawn and combined, they show players how to set up scenery, where they can set up their force, how the game is won and a random effect for the game. This allows games to be set up very quickly. If playing in Open Play, this set-up can provide a huge variety in terms of games, but not entirely balanced. Players can also play Warcry competitively in Matched Play, in which case only specific balanced options are used. Narrative Play opens up some interesting scenarios and players can take it even further with a detailed campaign system where warbands can receive upgrades and capture spoils after each game. In campaigns, fighters can also be slain or injured, but such is the way of Chaos.

Warcry Battleplan cards
The Battleplan Cards contain the same Deployment, Twist, and Victory cards from the Starter Set. These combined with the Terrain cards from the Starter Set or Scenery Set give you all 4 of the decks you need to set up games of Warcry.

Warcry has a very interesting initiative system, where players all roll 6 dice each. Any doubles, triples or quads rolled by a player (2, 3 or 4 of the same number) are put to one side and can be used to activate powerful abilities for your warband. The player who rolls the most amount of unique numbers gains the initiative and gets to go first. Players also get a Wild Dice each turn, which they can use to add either another unique number to try and win the initiative, or to boost their existing dice to make a single a double, a double a triple or a triple a quad.

Warcry initiative system
Warcry has an interesting initiative system where dice are split between abilities and going first.

The game turns are very straight-forward, with players alternatively activating their warriors, who each have 2 actions with which they can move, attack, disengage or wait. Attack rolls are streamlined into a single roll. Players simply select the weapon their warrior is attacking with, check the range of that weapon, and roll an amount of D6 equal to that weapon’s attack roll. There is only one roll, which combines the rolls to hit, wound and any saving throws into a dice throw. This keeps games very quick, as it’s very easy to work out. If the strength of the weapon is equal to the toughness of the target, you need a 4, 5, or 6. If the strength is less, 5 or 6, and if it’s more, 3, 4, 5, or 6.

Weapons have 2 amounts of damage, the first is their standard damage, which is done by each dice that hits and the second is a larger amount of damage that is done for each 6 rolled.

Abilities can be used before or after a fighter's action by discarding the double, triple or quads rolled for initiative. All warbands have their own abilities table, and warriors have access to any abilities that match the runemarks on their character cards. They all also have access to a generic abilities list, that all warbands can draw from.

What Do You Need To Play Warcry?

The Warcry essentials.
The WayCry Essentials.

There are a few products that you need to have to play Warcry and these we’ll call the Warcry Essentials.

The Warcry essentials are:

  • The Warcry Rulebook
  • Several 6 sided dice (D6)
  • Tape measure or another mode of measuring
  • Warband plus the Warband card pack (if not included with your warband)
warcry 1
The Warcry set-up cards can come from either the Starter Set or from the Battleplan Card Pack and a Scenery Set.

Some other nice to haves, that will make games smoother, are the:

  • Warcry Battleplan Cards
  • Warcry Scenery Set

We’ll go into details of each product below, including what they contain and how they are used.

Warcry Starter Set.
Warcry Starter Set.

Warcry Starter Set

Out of print

The Warcry starter set contains:

  • The Warcry rulebook
  • 18 Custom D6’s
  • Range Ruler
  • 2 Warbands, plus the warband card packs (Iron Golems and Untamed Beasts)
  • Warcry Battleplan Cards (Deployment, Victory, and Twist decks)
  • Warcry Scenery Set – Eightpoints Ruins plus Terrain deck
  • A 22x30 inch game board
  • 12 Chaos Beasts

The Starter Set contains everything you need to play Warcry and is incredible value. It includes all the Warcry Essentials, along with the nice to haves and also an additional game board to play on and chaos beast miniatures. We’ll look at both the Iron Golems and Untamed Beasts in the faction discussions below, but both are great beginner warbands for Warcry.

Chaos Beasts
The Chaos Beasts from the Warcry Starter Set.

The chaos beasts are included in the set because they are sometimes drawn by the Twist cards.

Warcry Starter Set Scenery
The Warcry Starter Set has a huge amount of scenery included.

It’s important to note that the build instructions for the scenery included in the Warcry Starter Set have you glue several pieces together that you need separate for a couple of the Terrain cards you may draw. Waywalker Studios offers full details of what you should and how you should build the Warcry scenery. You are of course free to build it however you like, as your games of Warcry are your own, however, you if want to build the scenery exactly as the cards require, please read the linked page before starting.

Warcry Catacombs

Warcry Catacombs Starter Set

You can read our full preview of Warcry Catacombs here.

The Catacombs starter set contains:

  • 2 warbands and stat cards - Scions of Flame and Khainite Shadowstalkers
  • Warcry core rulebook
  • Catacombs rulebook
  • Catacombs board (double-sided, one Catacombs, one outside)
  • Catacombs scenery
  • Additional outside scenery for use in regular Warcry games
  • Dice, tokens, and measuring stick

Catacombs is a complete starter set and contains everything you need to play Warcry in a normal outdoor setting, and also with the new Catacombs rules. The two warbands are currently unique to Catacombs, as are the Catacombs rules, scenery, and underground board.

This set doesn't contain any Battleplan cards and uses the ones printed in the back of the Warcry Core Rulebook and the unique Catacombs set up it its own rulebook.

You can read our warband guides for the Scions of Flame and Khainte Shadowstalkers for more details on them.

Warcry: Red Harvest.

Warcry Red Harvest Starter Set

You can read our full preview of Warcry Red Harvest here.

The Red Harvest starter set contains:

  • Two warbands and stat cards - Tarantulos Brood and the Darkoath Savagers
  • Warcry: Red Harvest rulebook (which contains the core rules)
  • Double-sided Varanite Delves board
  • Varanite Delves scenery
  • Set Up Cards (Terrain, Deployment, Twist, and Victory)
  • Dice, tokens, and measuring stick

Red Harvest is a complete starter set and contains everything you need to play Warcry, and also with the new Varanite Delves scenery and rules. The two warbands are currently unique to Red Harvest, as are the Varanite rules and scenery.

This set includes unique Battleplan cards for the Varanite scenery.

You can read our warband guides for the Tarantulos Brood and the Darkoath Savagers for more details on them.

Warcry Core Rulebook
The Warcry Rulebook contains the full rules, history and background and limited game setup tables for getting started with Warcry.

Warcry Rulebook

The Warcry Rulebook contains all of the rules for playing games of Warcry, along with background information on the setting and an incredible campaign system. There are several scenarios under each of the 3 gaming types that make up GW’s trilogy of gaming, Open, Narrative and Competitive. Limited tables are also provided for Terrain, Deployment, Victory, and Twists to get you started before you buy the Battleplan Decks.

Warcry Monsters and Mercenaries
Warcry Monsters and Mercenaries Expansion Book adds details of several new units that can be added in-game.

Warcry Monsters and Mercenaries Expansion Book

The Warcry Monsters and Mercenaries Expansion Book adds rules for 11 new monsters and 50 new fighters that can be added to your Warcry warbands. The book is entirely optional and isn't essential to play, unless you want to add more options and depth to your campaign games.

Warcry Tome of Champions
The Warcry Tome of Champions includes a huge amount of content for Warcry Games

Warcry Tome of Champions 2019

The Warcry Tome of Champions 2019 includes all the details previously published in the Warcry card packs for the Age of Sigmar warbands. It also includes the set-up details for other Age of Sigmar warbands that will be releasing next year. It only includes the campaign quests and background details for the new factions, not the stat cards or points values.

It also includes rules for multiplayer variants where each player uses a monster, fated quests, challenge battles and the Trial of Champions campaign expansion.

Warcry ruler
The flexible themed saw-blade Warcry ruler.

Warcry Ruler

The Warcry Ruler is a thematic range ruler for use in games. The Warcry Ruler is a flexible ruler to help with measuring over and around scenery, in the shape of a saw blade.

warcry battleplan cards
The Warcry Battleplan cards contain the Deployment, Victory and Twist decks.

Warcry Battleplan Cards

The Warcry Battleplan cards have a set of Deployment, Victory and Twist cards. These cards are the same as those in the Warcry Starter Set.

In the back of the rulebook are several tables that can be rolled on in order to set up your games of Warcry. The rulebook includes 12, and there are 36 of each Battleplan cards, meaning that you will have more options for setting up your games with the pack that you will straight out of the rulebook. It also makes it a lot faster to set up and randomize.

warcry 4
Warcry Scenery Sets include scenery and a dedicated Terrain deck for the included scenery.

Warcry Scenery Sets

The scenery sets currently available for Warcry are:

  • Corpsewrack Mausoleum
  • Shattered Stormvault
  • Defiled Ruins
  • Souldrain Forest

The scenery packs include a set of great value scenery, and also the Terrain cards that match the scenery set. These can be used alongside the Battleplan cards to randomize your battles. Several packs of Terrain cards can also be shuffled together so that you never know exactly what battleground your forces will be fighting on.

Various ways of making up the Warcry Warbands
Warcry warbands can be made up of a Warcry Warband pack or from the Warcry Warband Card Packs and separate Age of Sigmar miniatures.

Warcry Warbands

There are a couple of ways to buy warbands for Warcry. The first is to buy the specific Warband packs, which include the miniatures and cards for the warband. The second is the buy the Warband card packs, which come from several Age of Sigmar factions and then buy the miniatures you need to create the warband from the Age of Sigmar miniatures available.

Warcry warbands packs
Warcry Warband Packs are dedicated warbands for Warcry and contain the miniatures and cards for that warband.

Warcry Chaos Warband Packs

The Warcry Warband packs available are:

Each Warcry Warband pack comes with several miniatures to make up the warband, along with the warband ability card and individual fighter cards.

We will look at each warband individually in our Warband articles and will update this page with links as they go live.

Warcry warband packs
Warcry Warband Packs are dedicated warbands for Warcry and contain the miniatures and cards for that warband.

Warcry Age of Sigmar Warband Packs

There are currently 3 Age of Sigmar Warcry warband packs. They contain a selection of miniatures, along with the fighter cards and the warband abilities card.

The Age of Sgimar warband packs that are available are:

  • Gloomspite Gitz
  • Nighthaunt
  • Stormcast Eternals
  • Skaven
  • Ironjawz
  • Kharadron Overlords
  • Flesh Eater Courts

The Gloomspite Gitz box contains 10 Squig Hoppers, which can also be built as Bounders (or 5 of each including 1 of each boss) as well as 3 Sneaky Snufflers and the rules which are only available currently in this pack. It also has a set of Warcry Gitz themed tokens.

The Nighthaunt pack contains 4 Glaivewraith Stalkers, 5 Grimghast Reapers (with the option to build one as an Extoller of Shyish), and 4 Myrnmourn Banshees and the rules which are only available in this pack. It also has a set of Warcry Nighthaunt themed tokens.

The Stormcast Eternals pack contains 3 Vanguard-Raptors, 3 Aetherwings, and 5 Vanguard-Hunters (with the option to build a Hunter-Prime). It also has a set of Warcry Stormcast themed tokens.

Age of Sigmar Warband Card Packs

Warcry warband cards packs.
Wave 1 of the first 9 Age of Sigmar Warcry card packs.
Warcry Card packs
Wave 2 of the next 9 Age of Sigmar Warcry card packs.
Wave 3 card packs.
Wave 3 of the next 8 Age of Sigmar Warcry card packs.

The first wave of Warcry Warband Card Packs (which are now out of print, but the rules are available in the 2019 Tome of Champions) were:

The second wave Warcry Warband Card Packs are:

  • Stormcast Warrior Chamber
  • Kharadron Overlords
  • Skaven
  • Ossiarch Bonereapers
  • Ogor Mawtribes
  • Beasts of Chaos
  • Slaves to Darkness
  • Tzeentch Arcanites
  • Disciples of Tzeentch

The third wave Warcry Warband Card Packs are:

  • Maggotkin of Nurgle Rotbringers
  • Maggotkin of Nurgle Daemons
  • Blades of Khorne Daemons
  • Blades of Khorne Bloodbound
  • Hedonites of Slaanesh
  • Seraphon
  • Svlvaneth
  • Stormcast Eternals

White Dwarf Printed Warband Cards

  • Fyreslayers (Only currently Available in White Dwarf #451 2020)
  • Cities of Sigmar (Only currently available in White Dwarf #456 2020) 

Some warbands are not contained within their own Warcry Warband packs and need to be put together slightly differently. Card packs are available for each of the above factions, and they contain the warband ability Card and the individual fighter cards for the warriors available to that warband in Warcry. The miniatures then need to be purchased from the available Age of Sigmar range.

All the information contained in the first wave card packs is available in the Warcry Tome of Champions 2019.

We will look at each warband individually in our Warband articles, along with details on how to build the warband from the miniature ranges and will update this page with links as they go live.

warcry monsters

Warcry Monsters

There are 4 Monster expansion boxes available for Warcry.

  • Chimera
  • Ogroid Myrmidon
  • Fomoroid Crusher
  • Minstealer Sphiranx

The Warcry monster expansions are just 2 of the beasts and monsters added with the Warcry Monsters and Mercenaries Expansion Book. The packs contain the monster and stat cards, but details of how to add them to your games are in the Monsters and Mercenaries book.

Feldherr WarCry

Warcry Transport Solutions

Feldherr offers a range of Warcry warband and starter set transport and storage solutions. You can read all about them in our dedicated Warcry Feldherr Guide.


What's the difference between the Battleplan Cards and those in the Starter Set?

There's no difference. The Starter Set contains the 3 decks from the Battleplan Cards and also a Terrain deck specific to the scenery in the Starter Set. If you don't own the Starter Set, you can get the Battleplan Cards and a Scenery Set and have the 4 decks you need.

Do I need to Battleplan Cards to play?

The back of the Warcry Rulebook has several tables for setting up games without the Battleplan Cards. There are only 12 of each in the Rulebook, but 36 of each Battleplan Card, so using the Battleplan cards does give you more variety and speeds up the setup process.

Do I need to buy multiple Warband packs?

A single card for each fighter is enough, each Warband and Warband Card pack provides a card that numbers your warriors. You may want to buy 2 packs as some Warband packs have multiple build options for warbands, so to get access to every warrior type during a campaign, multiple purchases may be required. These will be covered in detail in our Warband article series.

This is a living document and as new products become available, we’ll list there here.

  • Version 10 - Updated with Red Harvest products 19 November 2021
  • Version 9 - Updated with Catacombs products - 24 October 20
  • Version 8 - Updated with new products information - 22 February 20
  • Version 7 - Updated with new products information - 07 February 20
  • Version 6 - Updated with link to Gloomspite Gitz Guide - 22 December 19
  • Version 5 - Updated with links to the Splintered Fang, Flesh Eater Courts Guides, and details of the Tome of Champions 2019 - 10 December 19
  • Version 4 - Updated with links to Cypher Lords and Corvus Cabal Guide - 03 October 19
  • Version 3 - Updated with new products information - 17 September 19
  • Version 2 - Updated with link to Untamed Beasts Guide - 09 September 19
  • Version 1 - Updated with link to Iron Golems Guide - 25 August 19
  • Original - 13 August 19

The Warcry Products used to produce this article were provided by Goblin Gaming and Firestorm Games.

We have plenty of other Warhammer: Age of Sigmar - WarCry articles to check out

More Warhammer: Age of Sigmar - WarCry Guides


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More Info About This Game
Learn more about Warhammer Age of Sigmar
Games Workshop
Release Date
July 1, 2015 (Calendar)