The following Special Character has not been playtested as thoroughly as the ones presented in the army books and is not necessarily as balanced or fair. Consequently, you must agree with your opponent about whether you can use him or not before the battle begins.
The Dark Elves have always made use of enslaved monsters, both for their fleets and for their land armies, but although there have been many famous Beastmasters in the past, none have approached Rakarth's consummate skill or expertise. It is said that the dungeons of Karond Kar are filled with creatures that Rakarth has tamed, and that amoungst them can be found one or more of all the creatures known in the Warhammer World.
Even as a child Rakarth had an almost supernatural ability to subdue wild creatures. When Rakarth was only eight years old his father had been gifted with a particularly fine Dark Steed. The beast was called Bracchus and was faster and stronger than any other in the Rakarth stables, but it had a vicious temperament and would buck and rear uncontrollably if anyone tried to ride it.
Rakarth's father attempted to break Bracchus, and was quickly hurled to the ground and almost trampled to death under the creature's hooves. Wild with fury, Rakarth's father ordered Bracchus destroyed, but Rakarth strode forward and asked if he might have one attempt to ride the creature, and that if he succeeded he might keep Bracchus for himself. Rakarth's father readily agreed, for Dark Elves love all forms of gambling, even above the safety of their own children.
Rakarth slowly walked towards Bracchus, fixing the steed with his steely gaze. Bracchus was visibly shaken at the young child's ice-cold stare, recognising instinctively that here was a being that out-matched it in sheer cruelty and ability to inflict pain. Lowering his head, Bracchus allowed Rakarth to jump easily on to his back, and meekly obeyed Rakarth's every command. From that day on Bracchus was Rakarth's faithful mount, serving him well until he was slain at the battle of Finuval Plain some 30 years later.
The Black Dragon that Rakarth rides into battle now is named Bracchus in honour of the steed that he rode as a youth.
Rakarth can be fielded in a Dark Elf army. He counts as a Lord choice and in addition takes up one of your Hero choices as well. This means he will take up both a Lord and a Hero choice. He must be fielded exactly as described here and may not be given and additional equipment.
Weapons & Equipment: Rakarth is armed with a hand-weapon, lance and the Whip of Agony.He wears the Beast Armour of Karond Kar, and rides the Black Dragon, Bracchus.
Whip of Agony: At the beginning of any close combat phase, Rakarth may make a special attack with his magical weapon, the Whip of Agony. This attack always strikes first. If an enemy model is also entitled to always strike first, the model with the higher Initiative strikes first (roll a D6 if they have equal Initiative). Rakarth makes a single attack with the Whip. Roll to hit as normal. If the attack hits, do not roll to wound like normal. Rather, the enemy model must take an immediate Ld test. Ridden monsters must test on their own Ld value. If that test is failed, they are overcome with pain, and must roll 6's to score hits in that round of close combat. After this special attack has been made, the combat continues as normal, and Rakarth may attack with his normal attacks.
Beast Armour of Karond Kar: 1+ armour save. This cannot be improved by any means.
BEASTLORD: Any friendly monster taking a Monster Reaction test within 12" of Rakarth will always pass the required Leadership test. If the Beastlord is slain whilst riding his black dragon Bracchus, the dragon does not need to take a Monster Reaction test and will fight on as normal.
In addition, a monster that is beaten in hand to hand combat by Rakarth is assumed to be dominated by the Beastlord and will come under his control. This only applies to ridden monsters, and only once the rider is killed. The monster does not flee, but rather is moved back from Rakarth an inch, and is considered to be a part of the Dark Elf player's army immediately. The monster will remain under Rakarth's control for the remainder of the game. If Rakarth is killed then any monsters under his control revert to the control of their original owner. If Rakarth survives the battle, then any monsters under his control are assumed to be destroyed in regards for working out victory points. Note that an enemy does not get any victory points for killing a monster enslaved in such a way by Rakarth.
FLY: Black Dragons have wings and may fly as described on page 106 of the Warhammer rulebook.
LARGE TARGET: A Black Dragon is an enormous mass of fang, muscle and scale and therefore counts as a large target.
NOXIOUS BREATH: The Black Dragon can breathe corrosive and poisonous fumes which can burn skin and hair, and choke a man to death. This is a breath weapon (see page 114 of the Warhammer rulebook). Hits are resolved with a Strength of 4 and any unit taking casualties from the noxious breath must pass a Leadership test in order to declare charges next turn. Undead and Daemons are not affected by this additional penalty, nor are troops that are immune to psychology, although they still suffer damage as normal.
SCALY SKIN: The iron-hard skin of the Black Dragon gives it a 3+ armour save.
TERROR: A Black Dragon is a huge monster which causes terror as detailed on pages 81-82 of the Warhammer rulebook.
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