Salamander Advice & tips?

Greetings scaly ones.

Ive been thinking about starting a Serap……Lizar….um…SALAMANDERS army. Can you cold blooded Generals give up some tips, advice, army lists? Whatever you can to help out a hatchling. I know things may change with 3rd- but you have to start somewhere.


well, no advice specific to the army, but may i suggest checking out the salamanders group on facebook, as well as the Lustria Online forums, which handles lizardmen, seraphon, and salamanders? i’m sure those places will have plenty of advice. though some may be out of date as soon as 3rd ed hits.

Yes, Ive done both. Just looking for fresh perspective and different views. But thank you.

I’d recommend the new REDACTED unit in 3rd. Makes a huge difference.



Can you explain a bit more?

If you’re looking for guidance on units to invest time and money into, I can toss some recommendations your way. With plentiful caveats that some of these will change in 3E, particularly if certain items or formations disappear or are changed. Given how skewed my experience was, since it was based mostly in the elemental side of the faction, and how mediocre some of the faction is, I can’t really comment on everything.

A thing before we begin, Salamanders are on the whole all-rounders, who are ok at fighting, ok at shooting and ok at surviving, often at the same time. This tends to mean that they aren’t actually great at any of those things, however thanks to the way Mantic pointed things out in 2E, they end up paying for all of those abilities, even if they don’t use them. In the end quite a few things end up feeling overcosted and underpowered. There are some standouts, which you’ll discover make up the bulk of Sally armies, especially competitively.


  • Inspiration of the Ancients Formation (2x Ancients Regiments + Clan Lord on Kaisenor Raptor Mount) - While the clan lord doesn’t need to be mounted, you pretty much always should if you’ve got 30 points. He’s actually a pretty great hero, before becoming -/15 and Rallying(1)!

  • Ghekkotah Skyraiders Horde w/ Jar of the Four Winds - It’s as good as you’ve heard it is. Amazing shooting platform that outranges almost all opponents, plus can mobilize late game for opportunistic charges and/or objective grabbing. Very dependent upon the item; while you might see a regiment for flying chaff purposes, it’s pretty unlikely you’ll ever see a second horde until they get an item that makes them worth it.

  • Ancients on Rhinosaurs Horde - While they can’t one-round a unit in a frontal charge, they bring serious heat in a more reliable way than most Sallies (i.e. they hit on 3+). Pathfinder and +1 Sp are popular items, and you will often see two hordes, typically looking to combo-charge.

  • Lekelidons - Very well-priced shooting monsters (Ra 3+!) that double as chaff in competitive armies. Expect to see 2-3 of them.

  • Mage-Priest - Though at first 90 pts base seemed like a raw deal, De 5+ on a caster is pretty cool, especially as you will always want to take one with Martyr’s Prayer, making it even more of a target. I typically take a second inspiring surge priest, because elementals. Fireball (10) backed up with Elite can really get the heat out too.

  • Ghekkotah Skylord w/ Blade of the Beast Slayer - The naked skylord is very good as well, but BOTBS puts it over the top, allowing it to seriously threaten heavy hitters. 10 CS2 Me 3+ attaks in the flank is real, and it’s zooming in from 20" away. Is a great harassing unit, with a little bit of shooting, self-inspiring and US1 for scoring.

  • Ember Sprites Regiments - After 42+ games with them, these continue to be my all stars. Chaff is king, and these little dudes can also remove enemy chaff at range, plus amount to some serious damage when applied in bulk. Most of the stampedes I’ve killed I’ve done so by trapping them with ember sprites and laying on the breath attaks. While some people use Brimstone Horrors from GW, I recommend PW’s Infant Demonic Elementals.

  • Agnih-Bhanu, Greater Fire Elemental - I love Agnih. Suffice to say, Piercing 4 Breath 12 is immense and melting entire elite units in a single shot is an amazing feel. While expensive, Agnih is a lot of fun to use, takes up a tiny amount of table space with her 50x50, and is a terror to all the elite baddies of the meta, from flyers to heavy cav to high De monsters. Not being shambling is IMO another advantage, allowing her to get where she needs to be without priest support.


  • Salamander Primes Horde - So I hear you need an anchor … Primes aren’t amazing, but De 5+ and Nv 21/23 (and pathfinder) makes for a chunky horde that does what hordes do. 25 CS1 Me 4+ attaks aren’t stunning but can do work.

  • Ancients Regiment - Even outside of the formation, ancients feel like they’ve got some heft to them. Elite infantry regiments are in an awkward place in 2E, as they’re too slow to compete as hammers but too low Nv to compete as anvils, but Fearless gives ancients a little leg up. I’m interested in what spamming ancients could bring, and have heard good things from a dude who’s been giving that a shot.

  • Fire Elementals Horde - With all my experience with fire hordes, I struggled with even putting them in this category. I suppose 200 pts for what you get is fair, and when their 18 CS2 Me 4+ attaks actually hit, things die. The problem is of course that they don’t hit with any regularity. Add Wine of Elvenkind (Nimble) or Brew of Sharpness (Me 3+) and you’ve got a killer unit that can surge into flanks with ease or hit like a big boy hammer … but now they also cost 240+ pts. In my experience, naked fire hordes are fine to good. Elite fire hordes with one of these items are good, but then they’re supporting an army as a hammer instead of forming the mainline, like they did for me. Avoid Ensnare and obstacles like the plague, 5+ to hit is a nightmare.

  • Tyrants Horde - I hear good stuff about these guys post-buff, although I totally dismissed them before it. While I don’t have experience with them I’mma say they’re probably worthy. Lots of great mini options too. Formation is probably a pass because you need to take two regiments of them, which feels like two too many.

  • Kaisenor Lancers Troops - Salamander cav seem pretty meh as a regiment, like most cav in KOW 2E that isn’t god tier. However 110 pts for what the troops offer seems legit, and I’ve watched some batreps where they do work. 9 attaks at CS1 + TC1 + Vicious isn’t bad, even with Me 4+.

  • Herald - Not real exciting, however 60 pts for De 5+ 10/12 inspiring is nice. I typically run with Banner of the Griffin for even more Nv help, but I did Healing Charm for a long time to give her something to do. Long ago I used two mounted heralds, one with Diadem and one with the Charm, as more utility characters and for the CS1 + TC1 bop to shutdown shooters, but moved away from that as I needed the unlocks for a second priest.

  • Clan Lord on (Winged?) Fire Drake - I almost didn’t put him here, but Vicious Breath (16) is pretty real, as well as the possibility of combo-charging with his buddies. Frankly, I’ve only heard disappointment from people using winged CLOFDs, and 280 pts for such a pillow fisted flyer does seem steep, but then I’ve run a wingless one for a couple years and, on the whole, gotten ok mileage from him. Height 4 means he can shoot down over my front line, or even snipe weak characters. I’ve used a number of items on mine (most often Blessing so he had Elite + Vicious), but got the most out of Heart-Seeking Chant (Piercing 1). For me this dude is a shooting platform + 50x50 inspiring bubble; anybody trying to use him for combat tends to have a bad time.


  • Ankylodon Battle Platform - I couldn’t in good faith put the ABP into good, as even with Strider I don’t think he is. I ran mine through quite a few games (12+?) and while he absolutely won me a couple of them, he quite often accomplished nothing. De 6+ is a solid counter against some units, but on the whole 2E is soaked in CS / TC, to the extent that everybody has the tools to flip the big guy over. Steady Aim means his shooting might be more meaningful (firebolts ftw), but frankly you aren’t taking him for those 10 Ra 5+ shots, even with Vicious.

  • Komodon - Everybody hates on artillery in 2E, and I don’t disagree. Though they don’t have indirect, making them even worse as living artillery, komodons have some weird upsides thanks to being monsters (scoring, height 4, can flank) and having blast on their fists as well as shooting. I have two unbuilt that I wanted to use at some point, but my list couldn’t stuff 250 points of weird random monster into it.


  • Greater Fire Elemental - Yep, I’m tanking this guy. I ran two for a dozen games, including a tournament, and mostly hated them. I get that they’re cheap (160) and are intended to get that small 50x50 surged into flanks, where 16 attaks become a lot more real than 8, but they were just slow and bleh for me. Breath (6) doesn’t allow them to do much as they shuffle around, and to the front of a unit they get nothing at all done. This of course is compounded by Agnih’s introduction.

  • Salamander Unblooded - A unit made redundant by the primes when hordes, ancients when regiments, or sprites / ghekkotah when troops. Feels like an entirely narrative unit.

  • Ceremonial Guard - I forgot these even existed. Maybe if Phalanx is juiced up enough these guys will matter? I think they’re supposed to be Temple Guard proxies, but those are almost always ancients instead.

  • Fire Drake - With a clan lord on back, the fire drake is possibly good? But without Me 3+ or CS2 this really is a 190 pt breath battery with not amazing Nv. Maybe there’s some possibility there, however I’ve never seen one riderless ever.


  • Corsairs / Firebrand / Crew of the Ember’s Dance - I like shooting chaff, which these guys seem to be. I do think they’re probably overshadowed by ember sprites however, as they’re cheaper more dedicated chaff and breath is often better in 2E than standard shooting. Still a stylish unit and I’ve heard of people using the formation (Firebrand + 3x Corsair Troops) to seriously harry a flank (nice buffs in there, hadn’t checked it out in a while). Lack of models for the corsairs probably hurts most, not many pirate lizards out there.

  • Ghekkotah Warriors / Hunters / Clutch Warden / Artak - I’ve seen people online use not-Skinks before, but in reality I only see jarraiders and skylords. Warriors seem like they can chaff pretty well, being very cheap and Sp 6; hunters seem kind of expensive for what they do (i.e. they cost too much to be dedicated chaff, but don’t shoot well enough to be serious shooters); and I’m going to guess the warden is rarely if ever used. Artak is a total mystery and maybe he does something worth thinking about.

  • Battle-Captain / Battle-Captain on Rhinosaur - I’ve heard of the BC on raptor being used to jump on shooters or flyers, thanks to the individual rules and being pretty punchy for just 95 pts. The foot version is probably never, ever used and the rhinosaur version I’m guessing appears with the inspiring talisman once or twice? As there’s no clan lord on large cav version.

Long post but there are some thoughts from me, after playing the army for quite a while. Interested to see where 3E takes it, bummer that we have to wait until the Armies of Pannithor book.


Boss Salvage- much appreciated!

@Darklord I edited your post using the “blur spoiler” function to make your post even more taunting :joy:(press the cog wheel for this function)


You are evil. :face_with_symbols_over_mouth:At least there wont be too long a wait for 3rd. :grinning: