Montresor, Outcast Henchman
"FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, MONTRESOR!"
"Yes," I said, "for the love of God!"
But to these words I hearkened in vain for a reply.
- Edgar Allen Poe, "A Cask of Amontillado"

Overview

Montresor is the Tormented hangman of Malifaux. He's quite mobile, and has several area debuffs based on fear. His most dangerous trick, however, is his ability to pull enemy models into base contact with himself and then choke them to death.

Montresor is most often seen in a Jack Daw Crew, as he is Tormented and has a great deal of synergy with Jack Daw.

Mobility

Despite his lowish Wk 4, Montresor is incredibly mobile! He has Nimble, which gives an extra Walk and allows movement tricks like a Walk followed by a Charge.

Montresor.jpg
Jack Daw's Crew can add enormous additional mobility to Montresor with additional pushes from (0) Driven by Injustice (a 4" push) and Writhing Torment (a 3" push from an Upgrade of the same name). You can also increase Montresor's mobility further with Upgrades like Scramble and Oath Keeper.

Even without additional upgrades and other models, though, Montresor has a very high threat range of 15" for a Charge.
Montresor can also maneuver other pieces in several ways. Both of his attacks have a trigger (built-in for melee) to push the target into base contact with Montresor. Since the weak damage on these attacks is so low, this might even be worth using against a friendly model. Montresor's Upgrade, Fearful Whispers, also pulls models into base contact with Montresor as a (0) Action. Again, this is useful against both friendly and enemy models.


Offense

Montresor has three layers of offense: his own attacks, the debuffs he puts out at range, and the terrible things he does to enemy models that are in base contact with him. These layers all work together: Montresor weakens enemy models nearby, then attacks them to pull them close with his attacks, then cripples and damages enemy models in base contact.

One way to think of these interlocking effects is "the scary place" (near him), "the noose" (his attacks that draw enemies in), and "pulled tight" (what he does to nearby models).

Area Debuffs: "The Scary Place"

Montresor has several medium-range area debuff effects, which mostly operate on Wp.
  • Mocking Laughter gives enemy models within 5" a -1 Wp. It's always on.
  • (1) Comfort in Fear does 2 damage to any models within 5" that succeed on a Horror Duel, until the end of the Turn. This is especially handy since Montresor himself can cause Horror Duels. Since enemies in the same range have a Wp debuff, this creates an ugly dilemma: resisting Terrifying is more difficult, and even if you succeed you take 2 damage, but if you fail you get Paralyzed. It can affect friendly models as well, so don't use it if it's likely to backfire on you. If you do use it, try to make enemies make as many Horror Duels as possible that turn afterward.
  • (0) Fearful Whispers (on Montresor's Upgrade of the same name) forces all models within 5" to make a TN 14 Wp duel or get pulled into base contact with Montresor. Note that enemy models will have a -1 Wp from Mocking Laughter, and another -2 Wp if they're Tormented (such as from Jack Daw's Cursed Upgrades, Lady Ligeia's There Is No Forgiveness or The Guilty's Share Guilt attack). The spell requires a 7 or better of any suit to use.

All of these attacks are pulses and auras with 5" range. If a friendly model has the Upgrade The Creeping Terror (most likely Montresor himself, but possibly also Jack Daw, Jaakuna Ubume, or Papa Loco), this gets increased up to 6" instead.

Ranged and Melee Attacks: "The Noose"

Montresor has two attack actions which are very similar, a ranged attack and a melee attack.

  • String 'em Up is a melee attack with a huge 3" threat range and a very good Ml 6 crows. This range is long enough that it allows tricks like engaging an enemy without getting into the 2" range for shooting into melee. The damage spread is a very wide 2/4/7, so weak attacks aren't very useful without a trigger but severe attacks are devastating. The built-in Pull 'em Tight trigger pulls he target into base contact unless they discard two cards. With an additional Crow, you can use Tangle to Paralyze the target if they're in base contact. These two triggers work well together. For instance, on a Charge you can Pull 'em Tight with your first attack and then Tangle with the second.
  • Toss the Noose is a ranged attack with a solid 10" range and a Sh 6. It's mostly the ranged equivalent of String 'em Up. The damage is 1/4/7, and it also has the Pull 'em Tight trigger (but you need to supply the crow for this version). It doesn't have the Tangle trigger, of course. This attack can cause horrible damage on a severe, or move enemies out of position with a trigger, or even move friendly models into position and only do a little bit of Weak damage.

Base Contact: "Pulled Tight"

Montresor has several nasty effects that target enemy models in base contact.

  • The Choking Death: Hurts enemy models when they activate unless they make a difficult Df duel.
  • Tangle: Tangle is a trigger for Montresor's melee attack that Paralyzes the target. Enemy models that get stuck in base contact with Montresor will often try to kill him, so this is a nice way to protect Montresor while you choke your enemies to death.
  • Disengaging Strikes: This is a basic thing but it's good to remember. Montresor has a very good Ml 6 and if an enemy tries to disengage, he has a decent chance of keeping them in base contact. Of course, they can move away from base without leaving melee, but doing so would cause a horror duel that could be punished by Comfort in Fear.
  • Other Friendly Auras and Pulses: Many other Tormented models cause pain in a nearby area. By holding enemy models in base contact, Montresor can keep them in those auras. Overlapping Montresor's base contact with Lady Ligeia's Betrayal (so they can't cheat to resist or escape combat) is an especially lethal combination.



Resilience

Montresor's resilience is only so-so, and this can be a big weakness for him.

He's got a high Df 6 but Wd 10. Often he'll be spending Soulstones to prevent damage. He has Terrifying (Living) 12, made worse by Mocking Laughter and Comfort in Fear, so enemy Living models will often hesitate to attack him.

If Montresor has a lot of enemies close, he can do a decent job of holding up with Defensive Stance (and Comfort in Fear if the enemies are Living).

However, he has a big survivability problem. His primary tactic is to pull enemies really close and then force them to stay there, which makes him a very likely target since he is pretty much giving them no choice but to kill him. Be careful! If you pull a lot of enemies into base contact with Montresor, they'll attack him! Try to use Tangle to Paralyze any melee beatsticks you pull in. Don't fall into the trap of surrounding yourself with murderous enemies that will kill Montresor: he can very easily get himself killed if he's too aggressive with pulling in enemy models. Use cover! Pick your tarpit victims carefully! Use other overlapping auras to help your defenses!

Montresor's newest upgrade Brick by Brick gives him Hard to Wound +1. It also makes enemy models in base contact that declare an Attack action discard a card or the action immediately fails.


Upgrades

Montresor has several good choices for Upgrades.

Fearful Whispers gives Montresor a (0) Action to pull enemy models into base contact with Montresor. It only costs a Soulstone, and it uses a (0) Action which Montresor wouldn't use otherwise. It's a great way to add mobility to a friendly crew, trap enemy models, and force more enemies into close range with Montresor.

The Creeping Terror is a common choice for Montresor, because it increases friendly pulses and auras. Montresor is the only model who can take this Upgrade unless your Master is Jack Daw (with Jack Daw as a Master, Papa Loco, Jaakuna Ubume, and Jack himself can take it.) This is a great Upgrade to take if you're hiring a lot of models with pulses and auras, including Ama No Zako and most Tormented models.

Scramble is a great way to speed Montresor up even more.

Oath Keeper can help with objective-running, or provide an even bigger burst of speed and activity for a single crucial turn.

Survivalist can be a really important upgrade for Montresor if he's leading a Crew. It can keep him alive longer, which is very important!

Brick by Brick From the Generalist Upgrade Deck 2. Survivability and hand control for 0 ss, makes Monty worth those 9ss.

Tactics and Tips

Montresor has a few major tricks:
  • Zip across the field a lot faster than you would ever expect a guy that big to go.
  • Make it hard for enemies to resist Horror Duels.
  • Pull enemies close and keep them there, usually holding them within other nasty auras as well.
  • Pull friendly models close to get them into position.
  • Cause unexpectedly huge damage once in a while with his attacks.

Most likely, you'll be using him for one or more of these five things.

Remember your debuff auras! They can make a big difference often.

Don't let Montresor get surrounded by active enemies! He's great at pulling enemy models in. He's not great at surviving while surrounded unless you do something else to deal with those enemies that get drawn in. Paralyze them or debuff them if they're close.

Montresor is a likely target for enemy attacks, especially when they get pulled in close. Consider hiring a Nurse or a Freikorps Librarian to heal him up when he gets beaten up.


Leading a Crew

As a Henchman, Montresor can lead his own Crew. He's fast and has a lot of synergy with Tormented models, but without Jack Daw in charge, he can't pull in all those out of faction Tormented models he loves so much. Still, he can

Strategies and Schemes

Montresor is great for objective-running Schemes and Strategies (like Squatter's Rights and Stake a Claim) because he can go so fast. With support from his Crew, he can be very good at strategies and schemes to control and protect territory (like Turf War), but without support he'll die while trying to do so. He can help with killing-focused Strategies and Schemes (like Reckoning), but it's not his main focus and his low Weak damage will get in the way often.

Building a Crew

While only one or two of Montresor's abilities specifically mention Tormented models, you still probably want most of your Crew to be Tormented if Montresor is leading the Crew. His string-'em-up style lends itself to the harmful auras of Tormented models, and he can provide buffs and benefits to other Tormented models.


Playing Against Montresor

Montresor can be a lot more fragile than expected. He doesn't have many resilience tricks (especially if you attack him with non-Living models) and his best attacks will draw your models close. If your heavy melee models get into range, you may be able to kill him in a round or two.


Ownership
Unless otherwise stated, all names and images on this site are property of Wyrd Miniatures, LLC. (Link)