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Faction playstyles

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This is a little tricky because most factions have a fair bit of versatility and thus can be played multiple ways but I will do what I can to highlight what makes the factions unique and what they excel at.  Additionally Warcraddle is amazing about having all the stat cards online at wildwestexodus.com so you can view and plan out your armies before you buy into a faction


Counter intuitively to their genus lore, their playstyle is mindless zombies.  The faction has a large selection of doctors ("sawbones") so suddenly all your models have to die twice (3 times if they have mettle) due to them gaining the "tough" keyword.  Other factions can do this too, but Enlightened excel at it because of "Carpathogen" which allows you to spend fortune to bring them back yet AGAIN as they die (but only once.  afterwards they are "resurrected" and thus can not be resurrected again).  Because Sawbones and carpathogen strengthen nearby units, they tend to bunch up a lot and will often try and either deathball into the opposing force or sit around a fortified position.  Enlightened have a good blend of both shooting and melee.  They tend to be a little more shooty, but have a high number  of characters with creation that can have piercing 4 or higher weapons (a very nice benchmark because it bypasses toughness and mettle) through the "creation" rule once/round.

TLDR: mix of shooty and melee, hard to kill, revive once per model, tend to group up. SCIENCE!!


The warped and monstrous faction.  These guys tend to be all about melee.  They want to get in your face and then rip it off (usually with their teeth).  Despite having some of the most aggressive appearances they are a fairly good blend of offensive and defensive.  Many units have either shroud (which makes them hard to hit) or tough (which makes them hard to kill) to help keep them alive as their charge their enemies.  Additionally all of the units are "tainted" which means when they die they spawn a hexbeast which can try and get revenge for their untimely deaths.   They have a couple sawbones so you can group up, but because all of the units are tough on their own this is a really good faction for spreading out and flanking or mobbing other armies.

TLDR: mostly melee.  tough units can divide and conquer, very bitey, "this isn't even my final form"


These guys are tough.  Between tinman, forward echelon, and an already high grit even your hand units can have base grits of 7 (add in cover and the hunkered condition and you have some neigh unkillable troops).  This is a mid range shooty army.  A lot of them have pistols which only have 10-12" ranges, but there is a wide enough variety that you can build to whatever range you prefer.  The two things that make this faction special are the tinman rule and "dead or alive."  Every unit is equipped with a melee weapon so, while they don't really excel at melee, they at least are unafraid of other armies closing in on them.  Before this last update they used to be really strong at ganging up on people in melee because they synergize well together.  All their melee weapons stun, and most units have the "dead or alive" rule that whenever they attack a stunned character their weapons become lethal.  Now it is harder to stun units so that aspect of the faction comes into play less.  Tinman on the other hand is all about pairing up models.  If 2 tinman models are touching they get +1 grit and ignore terain and yeller checks (though it doesn't stack) which leads to an interesting play style with small pockets of groups.

TLDR: mostly shooty but hold their own in melee, tough as nails, back to back, "dead or alive" usually just means dead.

The Order:

These are some high priced models.  Best described as a small army of elite units, these guys are immune to most lesser beings.  With Cor Carolus, these guys are immune to any negative condition (unless forcefully applied like mettle or tough).  As such they make great use of smoke bombs to make themselves tougher and harder to hit while ignoring the downsides.  Additionally, a fair number have chains so you can actually drag opposing units into your smoke clouds to debuff them while you beat the living hell out of the heathens.  On the otherside, despite being an small model count elite force, they do not excel at toughness.  Without passive defenses like the hex or triggered/positional bonuses like the lawmen and enlightened you really need to play tactical with cover and smoke to play to their full potential.  So far they have not received many updates with the new version so expect to see more models and options in the far future.  Most of the units are very very short ranged (9" guns at best) or just straight up melee.  So if you can't find a wall, use the opponent's bodies as cover.

TLDR: small army size, interesting tactical options, requires smart plays, SMOKE-ING

The Union:

This one is fairly versatile.  You have a pretty large selection of vehicles and can even include motorcycles as a hands unit (something no other faction can do.  Shoulder to shoulder is the slightly weaker version of tinman: it gives the grit but not the immunity to terrain or yeller checks.  Still, with the buffed grit your hands units can be just as tough.  There are a lot of really long range units in this faction, but interestingly many all of the bosses are either 10" or melee, so expect to play the mid-range game so your boss doesn't have to just run in there alone.  The other really stand out point of this faction is that they have a lot of units with repair (the vehicle version of "sawbones").  As such they can follow either the lawman play style of pairing up, or the hex play style of balling up.  Also guns.  Lots and lots of guns.

TLDR: lots of vehicles, pair up or ball up, gotta go fast! Card games on Motorcycles!!

Warrior Nation:

At first glance they are very similar to the Hex play style, but their offense relies on special mechanics which can make them either way more powerful or way more lacking compared to their warped brethren.  Attuned is probably the biggest faction trait they have.  If you focus the attack, any weapon with attune gets piercing equal to half your mind stat.  Fairly frequently this can give you piercing 4 or higher much like the creation rule that the enlightened have, except focusing also buffs your accuracy and can happen more than once per round.  Along a similar vein, the long range units often have spirit aim which lets you bypass the accuracy penalty for enemies having cover (though they still get the grit bonus) which can give you a huge advantage when playing in heavy terrain maps.  Like the hex they are very melee oriented, but they also can summon totems which act like portals so you can teleport to your foe instead of running head first into their machine guns.  On the other hand, many of their units are far less durable than their hex equivalents.  As such you have an army that charges the enemy, does massive damage, but when the enemy backs up you can't attune your weapons for the reaction strikes and then you fall to their reacting fire (with the exception of some of their bosses like Ghost wolf and raging bear who are ridiculously tough).  If you like going ALL IN this can be a fun posse for you.

TLDR: melee with great offense but a little less durable, teleporting, psychic weapons, totally lightsabers

The more advanced ones:


Outlaws do a little of everything.  Want melee? we have forceful strikes (like creation) to let you punch your way through tanks.  Want shooting? sure, pick your range and rate of fire, we have it all.  Vechicles? why not, we have one of the largest selections (even if we can't have them for our hands units).  On the other hand they lack the more focused aspects that the other posses have.  With a grit of 4 and no tinman/shoulder to shoulder your hand units are 20% more likely to die than their lawman or union equivalents.  Durability for faces is kind of all over the place and they don't have very many unstoppable juggernauts like other factions have.  However if you can beat them, join them.  Outlaw posses can be added to any other eligible faction.  So billy the kid can bring a bunch of renegades and join with the lawmen to stop a larger threat, or Jesse James can ally with the enlightened to show they union exactly how welcomed they are.  So not only are they the most versatile faction, they can pair with other more specialized factions to build whatever kind of army you could possibly want.  However this is only for larger point games.  Anything 1000pts or lower is usually going to be single posse. 

TLDR: does a bit of everything, can excel at many aspects but lacks a unique play style, with a rebel yell I cried "More, More, More"

The Watchers:

Advanced civilization means really advanced guns.  You can have long range piercing 4 weapons, aoe weapons, or just high rates of fire.  Despite this they also have a large selection of melee units to go wreck opponents faces.  While the number of different units is low, very few are "unique" so if you just want a ton of engineers, feel free to knock yourself out.  Despite having few classes and options, the options they do have tend to cover a wide variety of scenarios.  The scarabs for instance can pop up anywhere on the map, stab people in the face, and then disappear back underground.  The cannon has a 24" range on it's blast weapon so you can shoot explosions halfway across the map.  The engineer is both a doctor and mechanic so it buffs ALL units around it rather than either humans or machines.  Where things get really crazy is the Ceruleons who are shapeshifters.  They can spend an action to become any outlaw unit which means the entire catalog of outlaw units is at your whim in the middle of battle.  In exchange for that versatility they have to spend an action to shift (and can be knocked out of their shape if they get a disability) and are usually a little more expensive than the average outlaw.  It requires you to heavily invest in the game (which can be daunting for new players) so that you have all the outlaw models to replace your units with, but once you amass a large selection it can be a very rewarding faction.  

TLDR: few options, but each model covers many rolls.  Shapeshifters, little green men.


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