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Malifaux Rule Reference

This is my personal rules reference. It is not a FAQ, nor is it intended to tell anyone how the game should be played.

This page is so I can reference it when running tournaments, allowing me to quickly see how I’ve resolved rule questions in the past and why I made that decision. I’ve also added a few other references like an index for timing rules.

I hope others find it helpful.

Jan 2018 Errata

Here are all of the January 2018 Errat. I've put the new points cost for each model/upgrade in brackets after its name.


Cojo [6] (Cost -2)
Hoarcat Pride [4] (Cost -1)
Ice Golem [9] (Cost -1)
Razorspine Rattler [6] (Cost -1)
Slateridge Mauler [7] (Cost -1)
The Captain [9] (Cost -1)
Patron's Blessing [1] (Cost -1)


Bayou Bushwhackers [5] (Cost -1)
Burt Jebsen [8] (Cost +1)
Francois LaCroix [8] (Cost +1)
Mancha Roja [9] (Cost -1)
McTavish [11] (Cost +1)
Mechanized Porkchop [6] (Cost -1)
Moon Shinobi [5] (Cost -1)
Rafael LaCroix [6] (Cost -1)
Survivor [4] (Cost -1)
Whiskey Golem [9] (Cost -1)
Wild Boar [5] (Cost -1)
Running Tab [1] (Cost -1)


Captain Dashel [8] (Cost -1)
Guild Guard [3] (Cost -1)
Guild Lawyer [5] (Cost -1)
Pale Rider [10] (Cost -2)
Samael Hopkins [8] (Cost -1)
The Judge [8] (Cost -1)
The Lone Marshal [7] (Cost -1)
Witchling Handler [7] (Cost -1)
Lead Lined Coat [1] (Cost -1)


Baby Kade [6] (Cost -1)
Bad Juju [7] (Cost -1)
Beckoner [6] (Cost -1)
Bunraku [5] (Cost -1)
Hooded Rider [10] (Cost -2)
Lelu [6] (Cost -1)
Spawn Mother [8] (Cost -1)
Tuco [6] (Cost -1)
Vasilisa [8] (Cost -1)


Ashes and Dust [14] (Cost +1)
Bishop [9] (Cost -1)
Desperate Mercenary [3] (Cost -1)
Freikorps Specialist [7] (Cost -1)
Freikorps Trapper [7] (Cost +1)
Hans [7] (Cost -1)
Johan [7] (Cost +1)
Taelor [9] (Cost -1)
The Guilty [4] ( Cost -1)
Scramble [1] (Cost -1)


Dead Rider [10] (Cost -2)
Hayreddin [6] (Cost -1)
Nurse [6] (Cost +1)
Shikome [7] (Cost -1)
Student of Sinew [6] (Cost -1)
Student of Steel [6] (Cost -1)
Student of Viscera [8] (Cost -1)
Sinister Reputation: Gains a 1" Smiley face in addition to the Smiley face on Live for Pain.

Ten Thunders

Dawn Serpent [9] (Cost -1)
Fuhatsu [9] (Cost -1)
Monk of High River [5] (Cost -1)
Ototo [9] (Cost -1)
Terracotta Warriors [6] (Cost +1)
Thunder Archer [6] (Cost -1)
Yamaziko [6] (Cost -1)
Yasunori [13] (Cost +1)
The Storm changes to: "When damaging an enemy model, this model may place all resulting Smiley face Markers anywhere in 8" of this model and within Line of Sight. Markers placed in this way do not need to be touching each other."


Q) Do 'when damaging' effects happen when a model is killed?

A) Yes. When damaging effects happen when damage is applied. The model dies and is removed immediately after that except in the case After Damaging triggers which delay the removal of the model.

Reference: Sun Quiang's King of Medicine on a dying model

Q) In what order are the effects of an Action or an Ability resolved? Can other abilities take place in the middle of the Action/Ability?

A) The effects are resolved in the order they are written. Other Abilities can take place before the Action/Ability is fully resolved. If an Alp, for example, would hit an enemy model with Kiss Goodnight, the enemy model would first suffer damage from the Attack and only after that gain slow and suffer damage from Feed on Dreams. All of this would happen before after failing defensive triggers, for example.

Reference: Common Malifaux TO Rulings

Timing Index
Topic Page Notes
Actions 35/37
Actions Causing Actions 35/38
Activations 33/36
Blasts 59/50 Attacker determins order affected models resovle blast effects.
Chain Activations 33/36
General Timing 51/46 Triggers before Abilities. Simultaneous Abilities: Acting Model, Defending Model, First Player's other models, Second Player's other models.
Opposed Duels 25/32 Notes
Relent 27/33 Must be declared before any cards are flipped.
Reshuffle Deck 14/24 Reshuffle "When the player would draw or flip from her Fate Deck and there are no cards left..."
Shooting into Engagements 50/45 Duels that require a dule (e.g. Horror) are resolved after randomization.
Simple Duels 22/30
Simple Duels, Simultaneous 22/30 First player resolves duels for their models in the order they choose, then second player does same.
Stoning for Cards 30/34 (Turn Sequence). First player from last turn must stone first.
Triggers, Simultaneous 26/32 If two Triggers would resolve at the same time the Defender's Trigger is resolved first.
Turn Sequence 30/34 Notes
Unburying Models 54/47
* Small Rulebook Page / Large Rulebook Page

Auras, Pulses and Blasts

Q) How do markers and LoS/Auras/Pulses work?

A) Markers follow all the same rules as models for LoS/Aura/Pulse purposes unless otherwise mentioned. If no Ht is given, markers are Ht 0.

Reference: Common Malifaux TO Rulings


Q) When a model that is immune to a condition is forced to choose between gaining that condition and another option, can they choose to gain the condition?

A) Yes, the model can choose to the option to apply the condition, but they will not gain the condition.

Reference: Sloth and Paralyzing Slow Targets - Can you choose to paralyze a model with immunity?

Q) Is a model considered to gain a condition if it is immune to that condition?

A) No

Reference: Big Rulebook pg 39

Q) Is a model considered to gain a non-stacking condition if it already has that condition?

A) No

Reference: Big Rulebook pg 52

Q) Is a model considered to gain Slow if it already has Fast?

A) Yes. Same answer for reverse.

Reference: Big Rulebook pg 52


Q) If two crews are tied for initiative and both have the ability to cheat initiative, who cheats first?

A) The player with the lower card. Though initiative flips are not duels, forum consensus has been to treat them as duels when appropriate. If there is a tie the First player from the previous turn must cheat first.

Reference: Ill Omens- Rule Query

Q) If a crew that can cheat initiative does so and it results in a tie, can initiative be cheated again?

A) No, though initiative flips are not duels, forum consensus has been to treat them as duels when appropriate. In a duel you may only cheat once.

Reference: Ill Omens


Q) What suits are considered "associated with a stat" for abilities like the Freikorps Librarian's Nether Fluxuations?

A) Suits that are built into the models skill as well as any suits added to the stat from any other trait is considered associated with it. Suits added to the duel (e.g. Freikorpsman's Reference the Field Guide) or to the card flipped are not considered to be associated with the stat.

Reference: Hannah, Nether Flux, and defining Associated With

Q) Does the red joker have a suit when it is revealed, for traits like Lynch's Cheating Bastard?

A) When the Red Joker is flipped or played, the owning player must immediately announce which suit the Red Joker will be during the Action. When a card is revealed it is not flipped or played, so the suit selection does not occur.

Reference: Lynch Cheating Bastard and Red Joker


Q) What does [+] for an Action mean?

A) It means [+] for that Action’s duel, not damage flip or any other flip.

Reference: Common Malifaux TO Rulings

Q) What does [+] to duels for the duration of an Action mean?

A) It means [+] to that Action’s duel and all the other duels that happen until that Action is resolved, including for example Horror duels and Manipulative. If the Action generates more Actions, those are affected as well.

Reference: Common Malifaux TO Rulings

Q) What does [+] to all flips mean?

A) It means all flips, including but not limited to: damage, randomization of shooting and duels.

Reference: Common Malifaux TO Rulings

Q) If an Ability or an Action requires you to deal x damage to a model as condition for something to happen (like Lucius’ Devil’s Deal), but you are only able to deal less than x damage because of hard to kill or model not having enough wounds, does the condition still count as having been met?

A) The condition counts as having been met, unless it requires you to deal exactly x damage.

Reference: Common Malifaux TO Rulings

Q) The rulebook defines Abilities, Attack Actions and Tactical Actions, but Lady Justice's Justice Unleashed upgrade lists two Tactical Actions as Abilities. Are they treated as Abilities or Tactical Actions?

A) They are treated as Tactical Actions. There are several cards where a Trait has been mislabeled. Justing Gibbs - the lead game desinger at time - stated Ophelia's the Tactical Actions on her card that were mislabeled Attack Actions are considered Tactical Actions. Most of these mislabeeings (including Justice Unleashed) have been quitely corrected; there is no errata, but more recent versions of the cards label the Traits correctly. Same answer for similar mislabelings.

Reference: Ophelia and Attack Actions and Lady J - Justice Unleashed

Specific Model Questions

Q) Does an Activation caused by Marcus’ Alpha work the same way as any other Activation?

A) The only differences are that Marcus’ player controls the model for the Activation and the Activation caused by Alpha doesn’t count when checking if the model has already Activated that turn.

Reference: Common Malifaux TO Rulings