Welcome to my new series of articles, Building On a Budget. The goal of this series is to help players wanting to start a new faction to quickly build different tournament viable lists for less than $101 while still giving you the option to play the master you desire. The pricing is based off the Wyrd store site pre-tax, so no special online discounts. Additionally, I do include some of the general upgrades in the crews which you’ll need to buy the generalist upgrade packs for the cards and those costs aren’t included in the pricing.

In these articles I’ll be breaking down my purchases into bundles with 4 tiers of recommendation. My tier 1 bundles are, in my opinion, the best place to start a new faction. The tier 2 bundles are fine places to start, but usually are limited in options. The tier 3 bundles are not the best place to start a crew, but if you really want to play a given master, it gives you a place to start. Finally the 4th tier is limited to the masters that you can’t make a decent crew while staying within my price point.

As an additional notes, I purposely avoid spending money on models that can be found in another master’s box, as I believe it to be wasteful spending if you are planning on eventually buying that other master’s box. So with that all cleared up, let’s get underway with the Outcasts.

Tier 1
Masters: Parker Barrows, Viktoria Of Ashes, Von Schill

Bundle 1: Vik & Von ($95)

If you want to play Outcasts then you might as well buy the Von Schill box because you will be using Freikorps (Trappers at least) in many of your other lists. If you combine Von’s box with the Viktoria’s box, you’ll have a solid start to the faction.

  • Hired Guns (Von Schill Box) – $50
  • Hired Swords (Viktorias Box) – $45

(1)Von Schill — 5ss
+The Shirt Comes Off – 1ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(2)Steam Trunk – 3ss
(3)Freikorps Librarian – 7ss
(4)Freikorps Trapper – 6ss
(5)Freikorpsmann – 5ss
(6)Ronin – 6ss
(7)Ronin – 6ss
(8)Taelor – 10ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss

(1)Viktoria Of Ashes — 7ss
+Sisters In Fury – 2ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
+Survivalist – 1ss
(2)Freikorps Librarian – 7ss
(3)Freikorps Trapper – 6ss
(4)Ronin – 6ss
(5)Ronin – 6ss
(6)Taelor – 10ss
+I Pay Better – 1ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(7)Viktoria Of Blood – 0ss
+Mark Of Shez’uul – 2ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss

The Von Schill list is quite versatile in its applications. Von Schill himself can either support the rest of his crew while dealing ranged damage or he can hunt down problematic models. The trapper gives you some board control by forcing people to either play around him (hide/rush him) or potentially give you easy kills on squishy models. While Taelor and the ronin are damage dealing threats who can soak some damage in the process. The librarian is both a potential damage dealer, but also provides healing which is amazing when all you freikorps potentially have hard to kill. I do want to warn you that the crew lacks really fast models though, so dropping markers in the enemy backfield may be a bit harder for this crew.

The Viktoria list is all about wiping the opponents crew off the board. The entire crew has good damage output, but make sure you are the one making the charges because this crew can be a bit of a glass cannon (and lacks numbers to cope with losses). This crew should focus on killing schemes or at least schemes easy to score in the later turns when the enemy hopefully only has a couple models left on the table.

Bundle 2: Parker & Vik/Von ($95/$100)

So the new Parker box mixes well with the other Tier 1 masters and you can take your pick of which one interests you more.

  • Fistful of Script (Parker Box) – $50
  • Hired Guns / Hire Swords (Von Schill Box) – $45 – $50

(1) Parker Barrows — ?ss
+Black Market or Highwayman – 1ss
+Stick Up – 1ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(2) Doc Mitchell – 3ss
(3) Mad Dog Brackett – 9ss
+Lucky Poncho – 1ss
(4) Bandido – 5ss
(5) Bandido – 5ss

24 Points from the other box set
Viks: Taelor, 2x Ronin
Von Schill: Trapper, Librarian, Specialist

Parker main strength is his versatility which he gains by cycling his upgrades around all game with his (0) action. The upgrades he has allows him to do a wide range of things such as ranged scheme removal, creating hazardous terrain, making other friendly models take hits for him, and more. In a typical game, Parker’s role is flexible and he can fill in any gaps you need, but I would say he works best in a more supporting role. Doc Mitchell is your totem who can heal your other models as needed and does have a ranged attack which you can use when desperate. Mad Dog has good damage output and can remove cover for your crew to take advantage of, but he is a bit squishy so you need to be careful with him. The Bandidos will often be used as  your interactors and interceptors during the game.

Tier 2
Masters: Jack Daw, Tara, Viktoria of Ashes

Bundle 1: Solo Jack Daw ($92)

The Jack Daw bundle forms a solid crew, but it lands in tier 2 because it could use a couple different models instead of an extra Guilty and/or Lady Legeia.

  • Guilty As Charged (Jack Daw Box) – $50
  • Strongarm Suit – $16
  • Nurse (Resser Box) – $15
  • Johan – $11

(1)Jack Daw — 6ss
+Twist And Turn – 2ss
+Writing Torment – 2ss
+Guillotine Injustice – 0ss
+Drowning Injustice – 0ss
+Firing Squad Injustice – 0ss
(2)Lady Ligeia – 4ss
(3)Johan – 6ss
+The Bigger They Are – 1ss
(4)Nurse – 5ss
(5)Strongarm Suit – 10ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(6)The Guilty – 5ss
(7)The Guilty – 5ss
(8)The Guilty – 5ss

This crew is deceptively mobile thanks to Jack Daw’s Writing Torment which should be giving pushes to every model in your crew for the first couple turns. Jack himself will want to stay in a somewhat central location early in the game to help speed up and position the crew. His turns will usually involve applying curses to key enemies, obeying his other models to help further position them for charges, and helping with the removal of enemies. Later in the game if the mobility isn’t needed, he can then go hunt down enemies (typically scheme runners). The guilty are there to make the strongarm and Johan tormented round 1, tie up enemies, and run schemes as needed. The strongarm and Johan are your primary damage dealers and thanks to their enhanced mobility they will be making some long distant charges towards the end of rounds two or three. Johan also combos with the nurse so you can paralyze your own models to heal them to full and then clear the paralysis with him. Otherwise, the nurse will primarily be locking down enemy models with her Take Your Meds action. Last of all, Lady Ligeia’s job is to position herself to deny key enemies from cheating fate.

Bundle 2: Solo Tara ($99)

Tara is a master that I’ve had a lot of practice with and this is a list I’ve used on different occasions. The only thing that this list is really missing is the other models that Karina can summon (Crooligans, Punk Zombies).

  • Herald of Obliteration (Tara Box) – $45
  • The Drowned (Resser Box) – $21
  • Johan – $11
  • Scion of the Void – $11
  • Sue – $11

(1)Tara — 4ss
+Obliteration Symbiote – 2ss
+Knowledge Of Eternity – 2ss
(2)Karina – 5ss
+The Faces Of Oblivion – 0ss
(3)Johan – 6ss
(4)Scion Of The Void – 8ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(5)Sue – 8ss
(6)The Nothing Beast – 10ss
+Void Shield – 0ss
(7)Void Wretch – 4ss
(8)Void Wretch – 4ss

You have a couple of playstyle options with this list. The first style you can use is the “Beast Bomb”. Basically, you utilize Tara’s extra activations to get her up the board quickly, after you’ve buried a big hitter (Nothing Beast in this case). The plan is to then unbury the hitter close enough for it to charge the enemy as one of the last activations in the turn, then win initiative and either rebury it with Tara or continue to kill/tie-up enemies. The other method of playing is maximizing Tara’s abilities to give out fast to the rest of crew. In either case, Karina will be summoning out models (only drowned in this version) to deal some extra damage and then later be unburied by Tara or the Scion (which the Scion can unbury/kill Drowned to drop scheme makers). The Scion can run schemes, do some killing/card drawing, or tie-up enemies (and bury when in trouble). Once the scion is buried, the void wretches can make use of his attack to deal good damage (just make sure to focus and then attack). Sue provides another source of card drawing and a solid ranged attacker. The void wretches can run schemes or heal your damaged models that are buried.

Bundle 3: Solo Viktoria ($91)

I’ve included the solo Viktoria list because this list can output crazy high damage and is a bit more optimized then the mixture with Von Schill.

  • Hired Swords  (Viktoria Box) – $45
  • Hannah – $35
  • Vanessa – $11

(1)Viktoria Of Ashes — 6ss
+Mark Of Shez’uul – 2ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
+Survivalist – 1ss
(2)Hannah – 10ss
+I Pay Better – 1ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(3)Ronin – 6ss
(4)Ronin – 6ss
(5)Ronin – 6ss
(6)Vanessa – 8ss
(7)Viktoria Of Blood – 0ss
+Sisters In Fury – 2ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss

The main “trick” with this list is to use Hannah to cast Sister’s in Fury to up her damage while not “wasting” a Vik’s action. This is normally done in conjunction with burning several Oathkeepers and having a alpha strike round where at least 4 of your models are min damage 4, often with plus flips. Before your ready go for the kill, make sure to keep the Ronin in front of the crew to stop enemy charges. Also don’t forget to utilize I Pay Better on Hannah for free focus if you have bad cards. This crew won’t be idea for scheme heavy pools, but if you need to kill models few lists can keep up with this one.

Tier 3
Masters: Hamelin, Leveticus, Misaki

Bundle 1: Solo Hamelin ($100)

Hamelin is stuck in tier 3 because you have to purchase what amount to two crew boxes to make him functional. This leaves you with no budget for other models, which you’ll want because his core boxes are primarily summons. While this list is good a interact heavy pools, you won’t want to play it for killing heavy ones.

  • The Plague Cometh (Hamelin Box) – $50
  • Brotherhood of The Rat – $50

As a side note, I would recommend using the rat creature that is supposed to go on Hamelin’s base (which doesn’t really fit) as a 3rd Rat King  on its own base.

(1)Hamelin — 7ss
+The Piper – 2ss
+Survivalist – 1ss
(2)The Stolen – 2ss
(3)Malifaux Rat – 2ss
(4)Malifaux Rat – 2ss
(5)Nix – 8ss
+Infectious Melodies – 1ss
(6)Obedient Wretch – 4ss
(7)Rat Catcher – 6ss
(8)Rat King – 8ss
(9)Rat King – 8ss

So Hamelin is all about activation control and obeying other models (yes he can blight things, but that really is a secondary function). The typically Hamelin turn is activating a bunch of rats early so your opponent is out of activations before you move a significant model. Due to your limited model pool, you can’t quite do this the same as you would in a traditional Hamelin list. Instead do the following….

  1. Malifaux rat goes (does nothing)
  2. Malifaux rat 2 goes (does nothing)
  3. Stolen sacrifices itself to make two rats. You will need to get your positioning right on this one, so one rat is within 3″ of the first two rats and the other is outside of 3″
  4. Go with the rat outside of 3″ walk it within 3″
  5. Activate last rat to form a rat king
  6. Rat king sacrifices itself to make a rat catcher and rat
  7. Rat goes (does nothing)
  8. Rat Catcher goes (probably reactivates a rat king)

So that gives you 8 activations before anything else moves. Then Hamelin can begin to obey models into position as needed and summon more stolen (typically you burn a stone each round to summon two in play). Nix is there the tie enemies up, hold areas, and get some extra blight on enemies. The rat kings are you anti-schemers, scheme runenrs, and attack pieces as needed. The rat catchers are there to reactivate rat kings and hold areas as they can be quite tough with armor stacking (with rats next to them). While this crew is strong at scheme running and denial, I would avoid it if your playing reckoning or kill heavy pools as its not idea with this set of models.

Bundle 2: Solo Leveticus ($100)

Leveticus is a faction unto himself and playing him on a budget is taking away one of his greatest strengths, his massive hiring pool. While this list will do fine in many situations, it is nowhere close to the power of an optimized Leveticus crew.

  • Salvage and Logistics (Leveticus Box) – $50
  • Hired Guns (Von Schill Box) – $50

(1)Leveticus — 7ss
+Desolate Soul – 2ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(2)Hollow Waif – 0ss
(3)Hollow Waif – 0ss
(4)Freikorps Librarian – 7ss
(5)Freikorps Specialist – 8ss
(6)Freikorps Trapper – 6ss
(7)Freikorpsmann – 5ss
(8)Freikorpsmann – 5ss
(9)Rusty Alyce – 10ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss

Leveticus’ job is to try and kill a model each round. The most consistent way is to do this from range because his attack can ignore virtually all defenses in the game (albeit on a low damage spread). Despite his amazing ranged attack, don’t discount his 8 damage on a severe punch if you have the cards to make it happen. The Waifs are both activation control and positioning for Leveticus, but they die easily so you’ll need to keep them safe (and near your 6ss models, which I’ll refer to as anchors) while still having them in good spots for Leveticus to appear at. Rusty Alyce is a strong range damage dealer and a charge denier, so keep her in a more central location to maximize her effectiveness. The rest of the crew is a standard freikorps one and they will be doing the same jobs as they would in a Von Schill crew.

Bundle 3: Solo Misaki ($78)

The Misaki box is a bit weak overall (and doesn’t help its mostly a Ten Thunders box), but because we are on a budget we are going to have to use most of them to fill up a crew.

  • The Thunder (Misaki Box) – $45
  • Hodgepodge Effigy – $11
  • Johan – $11
  • Sue – $11

(1)Misaki — 3ss
+Stalking Bisento – 2ss
+Tally Sheet – 1ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(2)Shang – 3ss
(3)Hodgepodge Effigy – 4ss
(4)Johan – 6ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(5)Ototo – 10ss
+Oathkeeper – 1ss
(6)Sue – 8ss
(7)Torakage – 6ss
(8)Torakage – 6ss

I purposely leave Misaki low on a cache because we want to maximize her assassination trigger which happens automatically when you spend your last stone for a crow on an attack. This combined with the Effigies ability to gain the stone back after you kill a target lets you potentially chain kills. That of course is the goal of Misaki, to hunt down models to assassinate (ideally your stalked target) while trying to stay alive (she will often die though). Johan and Ototo are your additional damage dealers, Sue bring extra cards and utility into the crew which is always welcome, and the torakage are your scheme runners or scheme runner hunters.

Many of the Outcast master are a bit harder to built on a budget because of their larger then normal hiring pools (often outside of the faction as well), but I feel like once you have the core group of Outcast models they easily transfer from master to the next. But be warned that Leveticus likes to bring in masses of models that are out of faction so be prepared to go way off budget if you want to include many of his options.

So think you have some better lists then the ones I presented? Then post them here and give me the breakdown on why they are better. If I like them then I’ll add them to the list and change the current option.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed the article. Also if you really enjoy my work, check out the S&S podcast here and my new Patreon site here.