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Blackpowder’s Buccaneers | Warhammer Underworlds Warband + Illusory Might Rivals Deck Review

YAAAAAAAARRRRRRR MATEY welcome to the Blackpowder’s Buccaneers review, this latest war band for Warhammer Underworlds contains the richest maneater to sail the mortal realms, Gorlok Blackpowder and his infamous crew Peggz, Kagey, Shreek and of course the monkey you do not want to mess with Mange !!!

First off I want to thanks Games Workshop for sending us a copy of the Blackpowder’s Buccaneers and the Illusory Might rivals deck to review for free, if you feel like supporting the show you can pick yours up from Element games.

So lets get into the review, this war band consists of 5 models so pretty average sized war band for underworlds, who are led by Gorlok Blackpowder a famous man-eater who loves to sail the mortal realms in search of treasure whose ship was dragged down into Harrowdeep by a whirlpool; which is okay as there are lots of treasure to plunder in Harrowdeep.

Like with other underworld warbands you get two decks of cards, the first being a ready made deck that you can play straight away (a rivals deck) and the other is a deck of extra cards that you can use in any deck.

Blackpowder’s Buccaneers

Of the three war bands currently out for Harrowdeep Blackpowder’s Buccaneers has to be my absolute favourite, I mean it has a Ogor who is a Pirate, a monkey with a knife and a fairly aggressive looking parrot; oh and two snacks I mean Gnoblars.

The models come on a dark grey sprue and are all push fit which made assembling them almost effortless and the bases have enough sand and bones on them that when painted up fit with the rest of my Ogor Mawtribes armies which for me is great.

The war band itself focuses on Gorlok Blackpowder with the other fighters supporting the maneater, the war band itself is built around acquiring Swag Counters which you get when members of your war band destroy enemy upgrades, these Swag Counters can then be used to reload Gorloks Grunderbuss, because Gorlok doesn’t use normal bullets he’s uses treasure to load his gun……. thats soo Ogory.

At the beginning of the game Gorlok starts with one Swag counter so you can start shooting right away, he inspires when you discard your second swag counter which you will most likely get in the second main phase which is really important as his Blunderbuss gains ensnare once inspired if you discard two swag counters. He also has the Brawler keyword.

Peggz along with the other “tag alongs” all have the light fingered reaction rule which is how you generate Swag counters, so if an attack from these minions is successful and the adjacent enemy fighter has an upgrade, you can break that upgrade and gain a swag counter, this is how all of the minions inspire so again you might not want to get too close in the first turn as all the minions only have two health.

As with Peggz, kagey is almost identical except he has a 3 range attack with ensnare so used wisely he can be your best source of getting those swag counters from a distance.

Shreek aka the parrot has a few interesting rules, first of he has the light fingered rule but can also be pushed up to three hexes when Gorlok makes a move action, he also counts as being supported if he is within two hexes of Gorlok which makes him a little bit scary and with grievous on his attacks he can become scarier if you get those all important criticals.

And I’ve saved my favourite for last, Mange the monkey on a mission. He has a reaction that allows him to be pushed up to 3 hexes when a friendly Minion makes a move action so long as he ends within two hexes of that fighter which makes him great at supporting other fighters in the war band, as the other fighters move you can use this ability to move away from enemy fighters after attacking them….. provided no one hurts the monkey.

Objective Cards

So the objective cards you get in the rivals deck are themed perfectly for this war band with all 12 being achievable for how the war band plays.

Bold Tales and Broadside showcase how nicely themed the objective cards in the rival deck is, Bold Tales along with several other objective cards have multiple ways to complete which makes them very flexible meaning you are more likely to get those all important glory tokens.

Utilising all of your fighters abilities to support each other will make getting objectives like Brutal Belaying fairly easy.

Ploy cards

Similar to the objective cards in the rivals deck the ploy cards really help Gorlok use his Grunderbuss to maximum effect with Hasty Shot and Makeshift Munitions allowing Gorlok to shoot out of action albeit at a reduced efficiency.

One of my favourites is Reckless Raid which gives all fighters +1 dice to range one attacks at the. cost of -1 defence until the end of the round, I really like this as it gives you a good chance of getting successful attacks and therefore swag counters for a round.


The upgrades in the rivals deck really do buff what your war band is trying to do, with the focus being on Gorlok’s Grunderbuss your going to want to get the most out of it when you do shoot More Powder, More Shot and Scavenged shot all add something to the already impressive ranged attack, while Troggoth Grease makes Mange more survivable which is great if he’s going to be up close trying to get swag counters.

Extra Cards

The extra cards in the deck add some variety to your decks and are always great for the collectors as these can be used in any deck if your not playing rivals, Make a path is a great objective for an aggressive leader as It requires your leader to have a charge token and be in enemy territory with at least one enemy fighter out of action.

Shadow Balm is a nice little ploy for any deck as everyone needs to heal a fighter at some point in the game and Keen Sense makes those companion fighter in your war band a little stronger with grievous.


Blackpowder’s Buccaneers are first and foremost gorgeous models, I mean who doesn’t love a monkey with a knife or a shrieking parrot and the fact that Gorlok is a pirate makes every model in the war band really cool. Speaking of models I found all of the models very quick and easy to assemble even for an underworld war band, even Gorlok who unsurprisingly comes in the most pieces was very quick to build.

I really like the break mechanic on the companion models as it really fits with the pirate theme of stealing treasure, the fact that Gorlok likes to shoot it is very cool as well, being able to destroy a key upgrade on an enemy fighter is a big deal so the fact that you have four fighters that can do that will really make your opponent think twice about spending that glory.

Gorlok himself looks strong but he is not the strongest fighter in the game and the upgrades while good do not make him that much stronger, which for a war band with only one real fighter is interesting, I can see Gorlok using his Grunderbuss to hurt fighters before sending in a little companion like Shreek to finish them off or at the very least get some swag.

Overall I really like this latest addition to Warhammer Underworlds Harrowdeep and I cannot wait to play some games with it.

Illusory Might Rivals Deck

So Illusory Might is the latest expansion for Warhammer Underworlds Harrowdeep and with it being a Rivals deck you can use it with any of the existing underworlds warbands, I have been dying to get my Ironskull Boyz out for ages and this is a great way to do that.

The pack contains unique upgrades called Illusions which are different to normal upgrades as they don’t cost any glory to equip but disappear at the end of the current action phase, if the bearer takes damage or is the target of a gambit card.

This interacts with some of the objective cards like Illusory Titan and Illusory Prominence which require some forward thinking to score. With cards like Phantom Retrieval you can retrieve those spent illusion upgrades and add them back to your hand…… which is quite handy. I’m sorry.

Overall the deck encourages an aggressive play style which is great but I hope there Is another that does something a bit different as not all the older warbands are good at being aggressive, I do really like that it brings some of the older warbands into the latest edition and adds some great cards to the game so overall I really like this deck.

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