Retribution: Dawnguard Sentinels 101

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The dawnguard sentinels are new and improved ready for action! Let’s take a look at putting these new minis to good use.

Who are these guys?

These guys have been around for a while but, with their new and improved models let’s take a look at what these retribution warriors can do.  The dawnguard sentinels are retribution’s goto weapon master reach unit.  They are slowed down a bit by all the armor they wear but have a nice 10” charging threat.  Just like their bane knight cousins they too also have vengeance.  They get an armor bonus while they are base to base with a buddy in the unit.  Unfortunately, their standard bearer did not learn how to wave his stick so he is just a body blocker most of the time.  They have a little above average MAT so can reliably hit most heavies.  They can also jack marshal with “PRONTO” which is one of my personal favorite janky things to do.  With Pow12 on the charge they threaten even some of the heaviest armors.  Keep you Officer safe so he can provide vengeance for the unit.

Who wants Weaponmasters?

Thyron can make the sentinels deadly accurate with the feat.  Spellpiercer lets you ignore annoying things like arcane shield or iron flesh.  Going back to PRONTO, a banshee with pronto buffed up by Thyron feat is scary.  Warlocks beware the 15”-17” sidestepping ,crit grievous warjack coming your way.


Issyria and Vyros1 both have Inviable resolve making the sentinels armor a respectable 19 while they are base to base.  Issyria can also help with defense shenanigans with blinding light and her feat.


Rahn can set up heavies or casters for assassinations with a combination of force hammers, telekinesis, and battle mages pushing stuff around the battlefield.

What can men do against such reckless elf sword dudes?

Sentinels armor can have a few pow10s bounce off here and there but they will die to most charging units.  And at only Def12 these guys are not dodging to many punches.  Vengeance is Granted so you can remove it if you snipe the officer.  Don’t kill them if you don’t want vengeance weapon master elves getting closer to you.  If you have to kill them , kill as many as you can. Retribution does not have to much pathfinder readily available.  Things like inhospitable ground and Rift AoE templates or extra forests popping up can really hamper their threats.  Remember, things like electro leap and fire don’t trigger vengeance.

What do you think BoLS?  Have you been delivering

  • paradiddlebob

    I hear crickets….

    • zeno666

      You better close that Age of Sigmar box then 😉

  • JN7

    Ret has a unit choice that isn’t MHSF? Whaaaa?

  • Michael Sellwood

    Please take the following as constructive criticism as I believe that Warmachine has a strong following for good reason.


    Who is the target market for this article?

    If you are writing for an experienced audience then you are probably lacking sufficiently in-depth coverage (i.e. you mention using PRONTO to jack marshall – how do you achieve this, what are the advantages or disadvantages, what kind of lists does this shine in, what kind of things can your opponent do to stop it that you need to prepare for, etc.). Not being a Warmachine player this is only a gut feeling however.


    If you are writing to open up the game and sell it to current non players / potentially interested players you need to make the article more accessible. I like to think I can pick things up quite quickly, but after reading your article all I can say about the Dawnguard is that they seem to be relatively tough and hard hitting in game.

    Things that I was left wondering:

    You mention Vengeance – what does that do? A 10″ charge is described as “nice”, but is that an absolute statement (i.e. nice for any unit), compared to infantry, compared to jacks, compared to other heavy infantry? The standard bearer is described as a body blocker – does he not have an attack? What does he bring to the unit then? Why does the unit have POW 12 on the charge? How does that compare to other things?

    If I wanted to play these guys what kind of list benefits from them? Do they work well with the Retribution starter box? Do they fit into any theme armies? What style of play is able to make best use of them? Are there any units they overlap with in Retribution, and if so what are the key differences?

    You talk about counters, but without any specifics – if I wanted to counter them as a new player of, say, Khador, are there any units that may deal with them better than others? How far does vengeance move them (so I can stay away)? How does sniping work? You mention a couple of things to control their threat ranges – why do they limit threat ranges? What access to this do different armies have?

    Finally I have no idea in the setting what these guys are supposed to be. Are they wearing power armour? Are they wielding magic weapons? Are they stoic defenders or merciless attackers? Are there any cool stories featuring them? Inspiring artwork? Does the unit do on the table what the background describes them as being like?

    Overall lots of question that go unanswered and given that the article is on BoLS I think the focus needs to be more on potential new players, who will I feel will come away from this article un-enlightened and not particularly inspired.

    • Noridaii

      Great response.

      • JN7

        That is a good response, but..

        Remember that (just like HuffPo) these posts don’t come from paid employees. Each one is essentially writing something just for their own amusement. As such, they are under no obligation to meet expectations on what is good material.

        • petrow84

          Yup, but such critics can urge the writer to better his/her next post.

    • templarsmonochromata

      This article was relevant to my interests, on a level I was able to engage in. The comments section especially mattered to me.
      You’re right that some of your questions are un-answered, but this was perfectly acceptable for ‘strategy at a glance for models now in plastic (did you know, I found that out here in this article. That could have been the best stated purpose of the piece), but it might be fair to say that you’re criticizing a doberman for not being a beagle,
      this was not the best article if it was to introduce a unit unseen before, however the topic can be said to be discussing a unit as common to the Ret army as power-armor close-combat marines are to the space-marine army. IE: they’ve been around ages, are core choice options, and have statlines you are likely familiar with if you’ve played the game.
      Due to copyright, I don’t think the bols staff are -allowed- to print those statlines, so some of what you ask can’t be done legally, though I may be wrong.

  • templarsmonochromata

    Im a nut, but I meta the meta, steer clear of the OBVIOUSLY GOOD CHOICE of MHSF, and try to big up the Dawnguard synergy strategies,
    in the hopes of getting around the things that hunt ret infantry so well.

    (This is mostly cause I use proxy models, such as my spessmarines, and dawngaurd kinda fit the bill)
    Having said that, I’d want to take sentinels and dawnguard in a combined arms force,
    and THAT is very expensive (we stick to smaller games, at 35pts), leaving very little SPACE for -jacks- Myrmidions, which the invictors NEED.

    Casters like Ossy can up the speed of the unit, which can mitigate the heavy armor move penaltys that both units suffer from….

  • Richard Mitchell

    I don’t know why people love MGSF so much. Everytime I see those things on the table I clear them off wholesale style. Then again I play alot of Khador and we get alot of 4′ AoE’s for jeep and armor 20 does not fear the pow suck weapon master crossbows. It’s all about the MGI if you want to compare apples to apples.