Screaming banner warhammer fantasy battle 8th edition vampire counts magic item
The screaming banner returns from 7th edition warhammer for vampire counts in their 8th edition warhammer fantasy battle army book. This magic standard affects the way your opponent has to take fear tests it forces them to roll an extra dice for the leadership test and choose the worse results, so increasing the likelihood that they will fail.
It has reduced in cost from 7th edition to 8th edition warhammer fantasy battle though otherwise its effect remains the same. The lower cost also means units of skeleton warriors may now take it, though they are not necessarily the best choice to have the screaming banner as weapon skill three or higher units benefit the most from the new fear rules in 8th edition warhammer fantasy battle.
Pros and cons
Pros are that it greatly increases the chance your opponent will fail their fear test, it synergises well with the vampiric power aura of dark majesty which lowers leadership and fear incarnate which causes them to either lose the battle standard re roll or to re roll a past fear test. The combination of two or all three of these magic item and vampiric powers dramatically increase the chance your opponent fails their fear test rendering them weapon skill one. This is most effective for units with a weapon skill of three or more themselves as it means they will hit on 3's and will in turn be hit only on 5's.
Cons are that as the Screaming banner effects fear tests it is only useful against opponents who have to take them. Some armies are completely immune such as Tomb Kings and Daemons of Chaos and others are largely unaffected such as Wood Elves and Ogre Kingdoms. Abilities that allow re rolls to hit in melee combat also reduce the effect of failed fear tests so making this and similar abilities less effective, this includes High Elves with always strikes first and Dark Elves with hatred amongst others.