Sunday, June 17, 2018

List Discussion: Maddox in Storm Division

I'm finally ready to talk about a list for this week! The last list I talked about was Maddox in my Stryker 1 list, in that post I talked about eventually using what I learned from that list to try and build Maddox a list fit for her. This is the list came out:

Raging Storm

Cygnar Army - 74 / 75 points
[Theme] Storm Division

[Maddox 1] Major Beth Maddox [+30]
 - Firefly [8]
 - Firefly [8]
 - Ironclad [12]
 - Ironclad [12]
 - Stormclad [18]
 - Squire [0(5)]
Major Katherine Laddermore [8]
Rhupert Carvolo, Piper of Ord [4]
Stormblade Infantry [10]
 - Stormblade Infantry Officer & Standard [0(5)]
 - Stormblade Infantry Storm Gunner (3) [6]
Storm Strider [18]

Let start talking about this list then, we'll start with what the list answers. This list can answer infantry both high DEF or high ARM. High DEF infantry can be shot by the Storm Strider and Fireflies being able to boost your hit roll via focus and power tokens for the Strider. These models all have "Lightning Generator" meaning that for each hit on a model you can have D3 additional models suffer a POW 10. High ARM infantry can be dealt with by the Stormblades and the Strider which can use its power token to boost its damage roll instead of its hit roll. The lightning generator from these shot can't be boosted, however having a Firefly within 5" of the models hit by the lightning generator will will give your damage roll a +2. The list however excels at taking out jacks, especially on feat turn. The  Stormclad can take down almost any jack when fully loaded with focus under the upkeep "Assail", being able to land a total of 4 POW 19 (one being a charge) and a POW 14 melee attack. This is without acounting for the "Assault" shot which is also a POW 14, POW 16 if teh target is within 5" of a Firefly can break almost any jack on its own. The 2 Ironcalds can focus on a single target to achieve a similar effect when both are loaded with focus. On Maddox's feat however, this cranks up to just insane levels. POW 22 on the Stormclad's melee attack and POW 21 on the Ironclads, if you can manage to load these jacks with focus and very very little can stand up to the beating. It makes the POW 18 that the Stormblade can achieve almost not worth mentioning, almost.

Unlike in my past lists, this one asks your opponent not one big question but multiple smaller questions. How do you deal with a potential ranged assassination with a Strider with "Snipe"? How do you deal with the Stormblades that can move a total of 15" for the first turn? How do you deal with the beat stick jacks? How do you deal with Maddox's feat?

Overall the list plays very differently from not just Stryker but even from Maddox using Stryker's list. The list very aggressive in where Stryker 1 would surge his army forward because he knows that he can keep them alive. Maddox moves her army forward knowing full well that she will take casualties, but whoever will avenge their fallen comrades empowered by Maddox's feat. I like this list, it play so differently than what I normally play. I plan to keep playing this list until such time that I have the same level of competency on it as I do with my Stryker 1 (Storm Surge) list.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Hello again, I’ve been getting some games in with a few lists mainly using the Storm Division theme but not enough for me to give a competent analysis on. So we’ll have to talk about something else again, something big. Today I want to talk about Stormwall.

It was pointed out to me by someone that a good number of my lists use the Stormwall and he was wondering why I use him so often. Well I am hoping to be able to answer that question while giving new players an idea if picking up Stormwall worth it for them. I will breakdown what Stormwall can offer into 3, defense, offense and lastly miscellaneous.

Looking at Stromwall’s defensive stats he has a DEF 10, ARM 19 and 56 Boxes or life. The DEF 10 isn’t spectacular and is somewhat expected since he is a colossal, his ARM at first glance may also seem a bit on the lower side but this is because of what some call Cygnar’s “Arcane Shield” tax. Basically it’s the idea that Cygnar has enough sources of “Arcane Shield” that you would expect Stormwall to have that +3 ARM always. While I don’t fully agree with this since you may have other targets for Arcane Shield it is not entirely incorrect. You will more often than not if you see something that can give Stormwall “Arcane Shield” or some other form of ARM buff. This puts him up to par with the ARM rating of other colossals. Combined with his decent HP and you have a unit that will require your opponent to dedicate resources to take Stormwall out in a single turn. Based on my experience without a buff Stormwall can be taken out by around 1 to 2 heavies in melee, with an ARM buff and this goes up to around 2 to 3 heavies. What does this mean in a game? This means that you can have Stormwall toe a zone to contest and the enemy will have to send in heavy hitter to dislodge him, remember that colossals cannot be moved unless they are moving themselves. A zone that is contested be a Stormwall can only be reclaimed by killing the Stormwall. This ties in very well to the next part of my discussion, offensive capabilities.

Stormwall has 4 main weapons that are worth noting in terms of offense, his 2 fists and his 2 main guns. Looking at his MAT and RAT they both sit at an average 6, do note that he can still aim bumping his RAT to 8. The range of his main gun allows him the opportunity to aim a lot, being able to shoot 14” with a POW 15 gun with focus for boosting is credible threat. You may not be able to kill a heavy in a turn but solos and lights can easily be killed if not heavily damaged with both shots directed at them. When it comes to melee Stormwall can deliver enough damage to break a heavy in a single turn with his POW 20 fists. I know that by now you’re wondering how this ties in to what Stromwall offers in terms of defense, well listen up.

We’ve established that most of the time you opponent will attempt to break Stormwall in melee and that if its ARM is buffed he/she would need to send 2 to 3 to ensure he breaks in a single turn. While these heavies are moving in to try and break Stormwall they will be taking damage from the big guns. Placing a tarpit unit infront of Stormwall to delay the advance of these heavies would almost always be able to break at least 1 jack before they get into melee with Stormwall. You may noticed that I keep referencing breaking Stormwall in a single turn, the reason for that is that if your opponent can not afford to sends the jack piece meal. Each jack that goes in to damage Stormwall and fail to kill it will most likely get demolished by Stromwall’s POW 20 fists.

Last this I will be discussing would be the other things Stormwall can bring to the table. We’ll start with his chain guns, these have a short RNG of 10 and a low POW of 10. They can fire d3 shots each, these can be used to clear out low ARM infantry when the needs arises. These chain guns however have something of greater use, “Sustained Fire”. “Sustained Fire” is an ability that allows you to place a wall template for each gun, any models that enters template or ends it activation on the template will take a damage of 2d6 + POW 10. This can be a very effective zone control against most infantry, unit that rely on “Shield Wall” and “Wall of Steel” do not get their ARM buff since they have to enter template one at a time. Last item I will discuss is the Lightning Pod. Basically each turn, at any time after Stormwall’s movement phase he can place a pod completely within 10” of Stormwall. Any model that is intersected by a line from the center of Stormwall to the center of the pod takes a 2d6 + POW 10 electrical damage roll, warjacks that get damaged by this get disrupted. This is good for occasionally dealing with stealth as well as high DEF low ARM solos and even single wound grunts. There is a cool interaction with the pod and Stormsmith Stormcallers to keep in mind if you ever bring both in a list but for me the most useful quirk of the pod is that it’s counted as a friendly faction solo. Need to contest that zone/flag 10” away? Drop a pod. Need to score on a flag 10” away? Drop a pod. I’ve won games via objective because a pod contested a zone, I’ve also won a game because a pod scored on a flag.

That would be it for today, if you guys have questions or comments just post them down below. I’ll try to get more games in so we can go back to talking about lists instead of individual models/units. Thanks for reading.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Hey guys, I again don’t have a list that I feel comfortable talking about. I am currently playing and testing my new Maddox list but I don’t feel that I have had enough games with it to for an informed analysis. Fear not however as I do have something that I feel comfortable to talk about that is Cygnar related!

The Arcane Tempest Gun Mages and their unit attachment, including what jacks to bring with them! I figured that I would share my thoughts on these guys to help new Cygnars understand what roles the unit fills. Let’s get started.

The Arcane Tempest Gun Mages(ATGM) cost 11 points, the Officer cost 4 points. Their noteworthy stats are their high RAT 7 and high DEF 14, they have average SPD 6 and a respectable threat range. They however leave a lot to be desired for their ARM and amount of damage they can dish out on their own. The UA gives them a bit more mobility with “Swift Hunter” and a mini-feat giving them “True Sight”, the biggest thing about the Officer however is his ability to “Jack Marshal” and his “Drive: Rune Shot” which I will talk about more later. They have the ability “Attack Type” which allows them to choose one of the following three effects when making a ranged attack : “Snipe: RNG +4”, “Critical Brutal: On a crit add 1D6 to the damage role” and “Thunderbolt: Push hit target D3 inches directly away from the shooter”. Their guns are also “Magical”

The unit typically fills the role of anti-light infantry, their high RAT combined with a RNG of 14” (Base 10” + 4” from Snipe Attack Type”) means that they can often aim to bump up to RAT 9. Meaning that they have a decent chance of hitting anything with a DEF lower than 16. They can also deal with “Incorporeal” infantry since their guns are “Magical”. The mini-feat also allows them to counter “Stealth” infantry and solos. The POW 10 of their guns means that anything that will require you to roll 7 and above to kill is going to be dicey.

Now we get to the fun part, the “Jack Marshal” ability and its interaction with “Drive: Rune Shot”. Having a jack under the control of a “Jack Marshal” instead of a warcaster is typically ill advised, after all these marshaled jacks don’t get the benefit of focus. They do however get a few interesting benefits, they can run or charge without using focus, they can gain +2 to hit on top of aiming and they get +2 to their range attack damage if they aim. Marshaled jacks can choose one of the benefits each turn, this is also on top of the “Drive” ability of their marshal if any.

“Drive: Rune Shot” is where things get really interesting, this makes the jack that is marshaled by the ATGM Officer have their ranged weapons become “Magical” and they can use any of the three “Attack Types” that the Officer has, Snipe, Thunderbolt and Critical Brutal. The means that you would want to marshal ranged jacks on them, here are some of my recommendations.

Defender or Hunter, allows you to deal a single high damage shot from a good distance away using the “Snipe Attack Type”. The damage can then be upped as needed via the “Jack Marshal” benefit of +2 to ranged attack damage if you aim. You can also use the “Thunderbolt Attack Type” to push a model toeing an objective zone for a surprise scoring. Which of them to use will depend on how many points you have, Defenders have more survivability but the Hunter is more accurate. I also recommend brining Arlan Strangeways if you have points to spare or a free solo slot as being able to boost on top of the “Jack Marshal” benefits is just golden.

Avenger, biggest issue I have with the Avenger is that its slow, has a short RNG and has low RAT. When controlled by the ATGM Officer “Jack Marshal” it solves 2 of the 3 problems. “Snipe Attack Type” gives is a good RNG allowing it to aim, the “Jack Marshall” benefit also bumps up this RAT. An interesting trick is that the +2 to ranged attack damage if you aim also applies to blast damage. So if you can pair him up with a caster that has “Fire for Effect” or Cain 0 when he comes out will see you shred infantry even with high ARM.

Cyclone, this by far is my favorite. Using the “Snipe Attack Type” you can reach far, giving more opportunity to aim and allowing you to take the +2 to ranged attack damage “Jack Marshal” benefit. Unlike the Hunter or Defender however, Cyclones can get 2 to 6 shots out that all get the +2. This setup is also very self sufficient in that you won’t need Arlan or Cain 0 to maximize it.

That’s it for the Arcane Tempest Gun Mages and their Officer and the jacks that they marshal. As usual if you guys have comments or questions just let me know down in the comments section and I will try to answer them to the best of my abilities. Thanks for reading…