Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review - Skirmish Gaming 101

Looking to tip your toes into the bloody waters of wargaming? The new Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Starter set could be for you! Read on in our review

Published: July 29, 2023 5:02 AM /

Reviewed By:

Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review Image containing the contents of the box set.

In the realm of Shyish, the dead rule with a totemic silence that washes over heaps of bones and endless graveyards. But Nagash, the god of Death, craves more power, and there are corners of his realm that hold secrets even to him. But as his ceaseless minions scour the land for powerful relics, heroes of the God-King Sigmar strike down upon the realm on bolts of lightning, determined to keep Nagash from growing even more powerful. This is the struggle at the heart of our Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review, a new introductory starter set for Warhammer's fantasy skirmish wargame.

I'm a big fan of Warcry, as I love its straightforward ruleset and approachable game design, and I've previously covered the Warcry box set Blood Hunt, the box set Sundered Fate, and much more. But I was curious to see how this new intro set works as a first step into the game. Games Workshop provided us with a copy to check out, so read on for our Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review!

Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review - What's In The Box?

Included in Warcry Crypt of Blood is everything two players need to begin their Warcry journey, from two mini fighting forces to rules, scenery, and more. The full box contents are as follows:

  • 72-page Start Here book
  • Double-sided battlefield mat
  • 8 fighter cards / 2 ability cards
  • 18 six-sided dice / Range Ruler / Warcry tokens
  • 4 Crimson Court miniatures
  • 4 Xandire's Truthseekers miniatures
  • Warcry Scenery, including a sarcophagus, statue, ruined fences and walls

The miniatures and scenery all come on plastic sprues, so you'll need clippers and plastic glue to assemble them. Though not as difficult as some releases, parts of these models (especially the Xandire's Truthseekers) can be a bit tricky to assemble using the instructions provided, but patience and dry-fitting (the process of putting pieces together before adding glue to ensure they fit properly) will make all the difference.

Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review Image depicting the three sprues that come in the box
All scenery and models come on plastic sprues, and need to be clipped and glued for assembly.

On the flip side, I found the scenery included in this box to be highly evocative and easy to assemble. Way easier, in fact, to assemble than those pesky Gnarloak trees that came in previous Warcry box sets. 

The rulebook spends most of its time setting the scene. We've moved, in the narrative world of Warcry, away from a focus on Ghur and the realm of beasts, and into the cold, dead lands of Shyish. I personally love this gothic, icy setting, as its more aligned to my tastes than the jungles/swamps of the previous round of Warcry releases.

After explaining the story -- both of this Warcry box and of the greater Age of Sigmar fantasy narrative -- the rule book does a good job of walking players, step by step, through the rules of the game. Before you see a single rule, you're given a series of battleplans to follow.

An image from Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review depicting miniatures in battle against one another
Xandire's Truthseekers (in blue) face off against the Crimson Court (in red)!

Through actually putting your miniatures on the map and moving them around, you'll learn the basics of the game. I love this approach, and find it really streamlines the learning process.

Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review - Xandire's Truthseekers

The four Xandire's Truthseekers models included in this box set look great, cast in blue plastic. Let's run through the four of them, talking a bit about their stats and abilities, and how they coalesce as a fighting unit. Each warband in Warcry has their own unique reaction they can take, and the Truthseekers, when taken down by a melee attack, deal d6 damage to an enemy. This represents them leaving the mortal coil in a burst of lightning to return to Sigmar.

An image from our Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review featuring Calthia Xandire
Calthia Xandire holds aloft her lantern against the forces of death!

Calthia Xandire, the woman holding a lantern, is the leader of the group. She sports 25 health, and makes 5 attacks. She can also, with the use of bonus dice, subtract from enemy special abilities and give nearby allies bonus move or attack actions, and sneak in a few extra attacks. Up next is the hammer-wielding Dhoraz Giant-fell, who hits hard and with bonus dice push enemy units away from him (crucial to controlling objective points). 

From here we move onto the long-bow expert Luxa Stormrider, who has an incredible range of up to 15" (huge for Warcry), and can use bonus dice to sneak in extra attacks. And finally, there's our fine feathered friend Taros, who can't hit very hard (it's a bird, after all) but can swoop in, attack, and disengage.

An image from our Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review depicting Xandire's Truthseekers
The Truthseekers perform best when coordinating their assault!

So what does this all add up to? With Xandire's Truthseekers we get a sturdy, hard to take down force of fighters who rely on setting up interesting interactions between different units on the squad to pin down enemies and keep them away from objective points. What's so cool, in my opinion, about this unit is that even though they work together really well, almost all of them can hit seriously hard on the battlefield. Oftentimes you trade raw power for good coordination, but that's not the case here.

Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review - The Crimson Court

Up next, cast in glorious red plastic, are The Crimson Court. These vampires can, for their army-wide reaction, ignore 1 damage point per successful hit (to a minimum of 1). Let's start by taking a look at their leader, Prince Duvalle.

An image from our Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review depicting Prince Duvalle, a vampire with a sword and armor
Prince Duvalle is ready to feast on the bodies of his slain foes!

Prince Duvalle has a hearty 26 health, and performs six damage per crit (which is a nice way of showing he's a skilled swordsman, even if he doesn't normally land the hardest blows). He can encourage allies around him to go into a feeding frenzy (giving them an additional attack), and he can even bring one of his downed minions back from the dead (though no minions are included in the models in this box)!

The towering Gorath the Enforcer hits hard with 3 damage on normal attacks (and a 6 on crits), though his special runemark only lets him do what any other unit in the squad can do. Vellas von Faine, with her twin swords and long, flowing locks, only deals one damage on hits and five on crits, and the winged Ennias Curse-born can fly around the battlefield.

An image from our Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review depicting the Crimson Court
The rest of the Crimson Court is ready to attack!

What's interesting about this warband is the fact that they don't - aside from Prince Duvalle - have any bonus die abilities unique to them and them alone, but they can all "Thirst For Blood," allowing them to regain hit points after killing an enemy unit. With this warband, unit cohesion and cooperation is less important than it is with the Truthseekers, but if you can roll crits with these units you'll be dishing out an absurd amount of damage.

Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood Review - Final Thoughts

To me, this is the kind of box set for Warcry that Games Workshop should exclusively be making. It doesn't overwhelm new players with tons of miniatures and complicated scenery, and it perfectly presents the rules to make learning the game a piece of (bloody) cake.

The look of these models, in their colorful plastic, is also so satisfying. Each sculpt is full of character, and really shows you - without looking at their rulesets - what you can expect from each character. 

Should I Buy Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood?

If you're just looking to get into the game, this box set is absolutely worth your while. I can't think of a better product released to ease a new player into the game. That being said, if you're already familiar with the game and/or already have some miniatures, this might not be enough to warrant its own purchase.

The copy of Warhammer Warcry Crypt of Blood used in the creation of this review was provided by Games Workshop. The contents of the box were built and playtested by the author over roughly five hours of gameplay time. All images, except where noted as courtesy of Games Workshop, are courtesy the author.

Review Summary

With approachable, smaller-sized Warcry forces and a clean, clear intro to the game, Warcry Crypt of Blood serves as a handy first step into the wider world of Warcry. (Review Policy)

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Giaco Furino joined the TechRaptor team as a Staff Writer in 2019 after searching for a dedicated place to write and talk about Tabletop Games. In 2020, he… More about Giaco

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