Aeternus Continuum: Faction Overview & first buys

Faction Overview & Strengths

The Aeternus Continuum is a faction of ideological cultists who see the preservation of their own bodies through biomechanical enhancement as not only a pragmatic means towards immortality, but a moral imperative. They are guided by a need to record and study history: they are basically a spooky historian cult. Though organized, they do not seem to have a consolidated seat of power, nor do they conquer territories.  Instead, they operate as a network of underground splinter cells, striking when their shadowy plans deem it necessary.

On the tabletop, the Aeternus Continuum’s unique strengths are the following: 

  1. Superior Furies through strong and plentiful weavers.
  2. Powerful Solos.
  3. Spraying their enemies with acid (Corrosion type attacks).   

However, like the other factions in the game, AC has plenty of models that buck this trend, and offer a variety of playstyles.

Acid-Filled Squirt Guns

The Hollowphage Cannon deserves its own section in this overview.  This long range gun applies corrosion, -1 armor (plus potential auto-damage) on hit.  The debuff persists for its own damage roll and subsequent attacks, letting you finish the job with  the rest of the force.  With the corrosion damage type, this weapon also dodges some of the most ubiquitous defensive foils in the game.  While the ability to debuff armor is available in other factions, no one has as much access to it as AC.  The Hollowphage cannon is available on both warjack chassises, the Scythe, and the Vassal Raiders carry miniature versions of it.  Add two faction-only Furies (Atrophic Decomposer and Canker Bane) that apply corrosion, and you have even more vectors for dropping armor.  All this may start to sound overpowered, but many other ranged weapons are below par (in range, POW and RAT) so need to be used in combinations with other special abilities. This rewards smart use of AC’s unique abilities in synergy, but punishes careless shots. 

Cultists and Cyborgs

Nowhere is the careful application of your resources more important than AC’s squads.  The three vassal squads all come with the Mimetic Cloak and Phase Sequencer abilities.  While both abilities can impact the game state under some circumstances, camping defensive focus unnecessarily is a costly mistake in this game. The Terminus cabal adds more capable squads, but generally AC squads are for objectives and to accomplish very specific tasks.  

Power solos

The solos are… a little less nuanced.  AC solos tend to be well-rounded pieces that do a lot of work themselves, often earning their keep point-for-point as well or better than any other faction’s solos.  The Marauder has warjack-like durability, respectable damage output, and the ability to activate every turn if you want it to.  The Nekosphynx can teleport far enough to immediately threaten to contest objectives. It is also a pain to kill, having innate stealth and the ability to heal itself by killing.  Similarly, Phaethon brings long threat ranges, and forces you to kill it twice, only it’s harder to kill and more deadly in its second-coming.  The strong solo rules only begin there, and the Divine Tempest takes things to a higher, stranger level.  This queen bee of a solo brings solid (Heavy Warjack) stats and a ranged weapon that can replace destroyed enemy warrior models with friendly solos. This power comes at a cost however, and the DT requires that you sacrifice one of your own warrior models every turn it activates. Sometimes this is a strength: You can sacrifice Phaethon to bring out his wraith form, if your opponent will not oblige. Not all AC solos are powerhouses though, and the Grafter is more in support: bringing a touch of durability to your squads. The Vassal Boss synergizes with your vassal squads, and has the dubious honor of having one of the most accurate guns in AC at RAT 4.

Cyphers, Weavers, and AC’s top notch Fury Game

AC’s base weaver, the Immortal Weaver, sends a clear signal about the faction’s identity.  Boasting the longest channel range in the game at 18 inches when charged, and the ability to spike the arc off of itself at the end of its activation, it is the premier starter box weaver. With a spray weapon and the slip displacer ability, it can channel a fury, move and shoot, and then reposition away to safety or into position for an end-of-turn fury.  This makes it one of the easiest choices for any AC force.  While other factions received fighters or squad leaders as their first hero solo, AC received another weaver.  Hierotheos Raxis Helps a bit with one of AC’s weaknesses -defense, while helping you lean into its cyphers harder. His presence increases your hand limit as soon as you draw cards with him on the board, and if you’re planning to channel furies constantly, more options in hand and thus faster card cycling are good things.  Not to be left out, the Divine Tempest, can channel too, and the Talons, are an affordable and speedy 3 person unit of weavers. All these weavers on already otherwise useful units give the AC many angles to shoot furies from, making them the premier spell slinging faction. However, this power makes you very miserly about leaving arc on the table, when it could be saved for stronger spells.

A bit about the value of arc:

Arc allocation can be such a complicated calculus, as the resource needs to be budgeted among so many vital aspects of the game, including buying summoned units, buffing attacks, and turning on special abilities. However, sometimes the math is simple: Save all your arc, and turn each arc into as many power dice as possible, turn after turn, until you’ve buried your opponent in red dice. If that is your goal, perhaps you’d rather sling a hard-hitting fury rather than bring in more units in the coming turns. Fury attacks represent the upper ceiling in terms of how many attack dice can be rolled, can be available twice a turn independent of whether models are activated, and can occur even more often if your models can trigger fury attacks. These structural mechanics for how furies work create a real opportunity cost whenever you allocate fury to a unit or a void gate. 

AC can match or surpass other factions in damage output through the wise combination of different capabilities on the battlefield, truly making the whole much greater than the sum of its parts.  The key challenge for playing this faction is making thoughtful choices on when and where to focus fire to deal with key problems in the enemy position.  Unfocused or poorly planned use of AC abilities can leave your leather-clad edgy cyborgs feeling sad and left behind. 

Example Warjack Loadouts

The Scourge, arguably one of the most faction-defining pieces of the range: as a melee monster dripping with acid (on one gun, which is strongly recommended).

  • the only warjack in the game whose stock frame comes preloaded with a mandatory weapon, and not just any weapon, a big nasty claw that has tantalizingly scalable damage potential. 
  • Best-in-class (base) speed stat, and access to the Hollowphage Cannon: which has a good case as best gun in the game with good range, pow and corrosion. The rest of the stat block is tempered by a lower RAT, and average defensive values.

Spicy Crab Salsa

Scourge with Misanthrope cortex, Hollowphage Cannon, Force Rod

(Weapons in Weapon Pack / Scourge A, Cortex in Pack B. If you play without WYSIWYG cortex, can construct entirely from pack A)

An efficient melee focussed Scourge, making the most of the Scourge’s charge ability to increase melee POW by charging, by adding a second melee weapon. Efficiency is that you can charge it for ‘free’ to 1 arc, then remove all arc after activating, meaning you can keep more elsewhere. Be careful not to slam with force rod before using your wrecking claw attack. The Hollowphage is always welcome on another warjack’s shoulder, however could be swapped for an Entrophier if you wanted to control your opponent more (by applying activation tokens from range). Because of this warjack’s melee power and multiple attacks, it takes cyphers particularly well, Consider Kinetic Accelerator (hit all nearby models with each melee attack), Ascension catalyst to get it into combat (+2 spd and flight), and Momentum calibrator (slams enemies with all melee attacks)

Acid Cannon Crab

Scourge with Revenger cortex, Hollowphage Cannon,,Nailer, Stinger Cannon

(Revenger, Hollowphage & nailer in Weapon Pack / Scourge A,Stinger in Pack B. If you don’t have Pack B, can swap Stinger for Void Splitter for similar effect )

A ranged scourge designed to maximise attacks with cheap ranged weapons. This one is more greedy with Arc: having more attacks makes the most of charging to 3 arc by adding more red dice, but it is difficult to remove from the scourge. The highlight of this is the Scourge gets up to 4 attacks and the amazing hollowphage cannon to spread corrosion everywhere. If you use the hollowphage shot first, corrosion boosts the power of the weaker guns to do more damage, giving lots of synergy to more attacks.

There is an argument for the Misanthrope cortex to make the arc more efficient (to clear arc as discussed above), however Revenger lets a charged scourge ignore cover bonus, and the scourge has a lower RAT than most other jacks so needs the help when using guns. Either option is good: I’d suggest for smaller games (starter box / up tp skirmish size) the Revenger is better to maximise value from this powerful piece, in larger games the efficiency of misanthrope cortex may be better to spread arc elsewhere. 

Melee Chopper

Nemesis with Battlecruiser Cortex, Hollowphage cannon, Obliterator, and 2x fusion saws

(needs 1x Nemesis A or Weapon Pack A, 2x pack B)

Nemesis in general is not for all lists, but is a powerful piece. It has substandard base armour, so should maximise arc to give it +3 arm against ranged weapons. Flight gives it +2def against non flying melee attacks. This limits damage against most things, however gaps include flying melee (watch out for ascension catalyst on melee warjacks too), and null ranged weapons. Taking so much arc also limits the impact of furies and reinforcements, so it is not always a good choice if you are playing a fury focussed list.

However, the trade off is using the best ranged piece in the faction, and extreme manouvrability. A good strategy is to deploy Nemesis and a solo first turn, claim a good rooftop or objective early (using the spike to triple movement first turn), and rain death on your enemies. Arcane Synthesis is a good card early to get him to maximum arc quickly.

Most weapons on the Nemesis are good: you can try most of them as you wish. Notable are some of the best High Intensity weapons in the game between Starfall cannon and fusion saw: since you are keeping arc on him anyway, you may as well make the most of it to give extra dice on attacks. 

The example here uses Hollowphage and obliterator for 2 great ‘main guns’, and Fusion saws for high intensity melee attacks. You can use the Hollowphage to soften a target before using other weapons, and also move closer to melee using Battlecruiser.

Contents of AC starter box, and core of first list

Recommended first list

Skirmish List (8 units, plus 1 hero)

– Immortal Weaver

– Marauder

– Nekosphynx

– Synturions

– Talons

– Vassal Reavers

– Melee Chopper Nemesis

  – Cortex: Battle Cruiser

  – Weapons: 2x Fusion Saw, Hollowphage Cannon, Obliterator Cannon

– Acid Cannon Crab

  – Cortex: Revenger

  – Weapons: Stinger Cannon, Hollowphage Cannon, Nailer

Extra hero solos:

– Hiertheos Raxis (hero)

Bonus champions:

– Divine Tempest

Core of this is the starter box and the Terminus Cabal, then add Raxis and a Nemesis. Remember the Relikon comes with the Talons, and a Raker is a great early buy if you play with vassals – both should be deployed whenever it is an option as they are amazing. 

Terminus cabal is a great buy early on, as these models are great, each choice in it is amazing on the table, and all of them are among top tier melee options. With Talons and Divine Tempest, the box is also overflowing with great arc relays for more furies. Combined with Raxis and an immortal weaver, you have a lot of choices to blast your opponent with spells. Raxis raises your cypher hand limit to 6 which gives more choices each turn. It also means if you play 2 and discard 1 cypher a turn, you can very quickly churn through your deck and bring spells back quickly.

Nemesis is powerful at skirmish size, especially if deployed at start of game to claim a good position. However he can have bad games, struggles to resummon if he is destroyed and can hog arc which can limit your furies. Depending on your play style (and budget), you could swap him for a Scythe, Vassal Boss, Grafter, or another Scourge.

Aim to magnetise weapons on your warjacks – there are a lot of variations available. The nemesis in particular can take any weapons of your choosing quite well, so feel free to experiment. And having a big fistful of hollowphage cannons never goes awry in an expanding AC force 🙂

AC Cadre: the Terminus Cabal. Recommend as an early purchase

Modified Skirmish List (11 Units, plus 2 heroes)


1x Scythe w/ Hollowphage Cannon

1x Grafter

1x Vassal Boss

1x Phatheon, the Whisper of Death
Optional: remove Vassal Reavers to add Vassal Raiders

This fills out a lot of the ‘must takes’ in the Aeternus Continuum. 

  • The Grafter supports your forces, spreading an armour buff, repairing, and replenishing your squads (after the Divine Tempest sacrifices them). 
  • Vassal boss is a great combat solo who also supports vassals. 
  • Phatheon is one of the best combat heros: even living he does a lot, but as a wraith he is a god of the battlefield. Difficult to kill with bonus armour against most damage types, powerful corrosion melee attack, and the scything run to rush through your opponents and spread more corrosion. When living you can put him on an objective and force your opponent to kill him, or sacrifice him to the Divine Tempest’s Rites of Sorrow to get the wraith immediately. Note once he is a wraith, if he is recalled he cannot return to play, so make sure he lives his best death: YOLO.
  • The Scythe shares the Scything run rule with Phatheon: the bigger base can cover more models but make it more challenging to end his move in a useful position. Force the engine lets him cover a lot more enemies and find a better end point, at the cost of 1 damage point. Without access to cover and average defensive stats, he may only get 1 decent activation anyway, so usually worth sacrificing his health if it will hit more enemies. A high risk, high output piece, with amazing results if it can all come together.

Full Battle Force List (15 Units, plus 3 heroes)


1x Spicy Crab Salsa Scourge

  – Cortex: Misanthrope

  – Weapons: Force Rod, Hollowphage Cannon

Another 1x Vassal Raiders

Another 1x Vassal Reavers

Another 1x Vassal Boss

1x Axel For Hire Wildcard Hero (or Harlan Sek and Tulcan also good)

In full size scenarios, squads do most of the scoring, so adding 2 more units is helpful. If you wanted a second box of Terminus Cabal, you can use either parts of it here (more talons), or add the whole box as a second cadre.

Also by this size, misanthrope cortex is better: the extra efficiency of circulating arc is more useful than extra damage from Revenger. You can swap your original ranged Scourge to use this cortex too.

Axel for Hire is a great wildcard for AC, giving them a solid shooter that they otherwise lack. Harlan Sek has many artifacts with multiple strong support abilities, he is always prepared for any situation. Tulcan is another option to support a fury focussed list: his abilities can take 3 cyphers from your hand and put them on him, to cast a 3rd some turns. Otherwise, he can take your 3 worst cyphers: reduce the size of your deck, shuffle your discard pile more and cycle through the best cyphers sooner.

First Cypher Deck

Rack:- Fury (5)

  – Atrophic Decomposer

  – Cryo Lock

  – Instability Equation

  – Nihilation Vortex

  – Pyrokinetic Surge

– Geometric (3)

  – Acheronian Venediction

  – Discordian Agitator

  – Displacement Index

– Harmonic (3)

  – Aggression Theorem

  – Arcane Synthesis

  – Recurrent Apotheosis

– Overdrive (3)

  – Ascension Catalyst

  – Impulse Inducer

  – Kinetic Accelerator

This leans into extra Furies to keep smashing spells into your opponents. 

It is assumed this will support a melee focussed force, using spells like Kinetic Accelerator (Warjack melee attacks all targets in range) and Discordian Agitator (Squad gets an additional melee attack) to get the most out of them. If you have more ranged vassals, they can be swapped for Reiteration Complex.

For more details on the key cyphers

The AC specific cyphers are:

Acheronian Venediction: While you’re aggressively swarming your opponent, why not put this on a big threatening target to give your opponent more to think about?  It’s a nice idea in theory, but this card is probably more playstyle and tactics dependent.  

Atrophic Decomposer: Do damage and apply corrosion.  This is a useful fury that lets you AC harder.

Canker Bane: Grants corrosion to a unit’s melee weapons.  Might be nice on a Scythe /Aenigma, or a melee-oriented Scourge, but it sounds like your gameplan is super aggressive if you’re taking this, as you’re likely trading out a defensive buff for this card. 

Nihilation Vortex: A zap with a 3” displacement. When you can’t dissolve your opponents in acid, just make them stop contesting objectives.  Excellent utility fury.

Recurrent Apotheosis: This card is so powerful that it is almost faction-defining.  A harmonic that replaces a target friendly warrior model with a solo from your reserves.  Not only does this bring some nasty unpredictability to your force, it cheats out a unit without committing arc to a void gate, and it’s a harmonic that immediately expires into the discard pile.  Amazing auto-include. 

Additional Resources  – Podcast focussed on AClist building and tactics

Privateer press faction overview: lore, strategies and list building (note timing was before the release of Cadres, so slightly out of date)

If you want more or have any questions, feel free to ask in the AC channel of the Warcaster Discord

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