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banjobenito

Can someone explain Kari VS Ardus to me?

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Hi Runies,

So I've only played 3x3 games as of now, which means my experience of the game is very limited. I'm hoping that this limitation accounts for the following problem... In every game, one unit has stood out head and shoulders above the rest as MVP: Kari.

She costs 32pts, has brutal and precise, 3/4 defence, best initiative in the current game, ranged and melee damage monster, and for my money the best surge in the game. Finally, her dial gives her white rally, so she can shrug off banes extremely easily. She can lacerate the enemy on the approach, then hold her own in melee, while still range-damaging. Wow.

How does that stack up compared to her arch-nemeiss, Ardus, for example? He's 5pts more expensive, same defence, no range attack, a slightly better melee attack (2 white but no precise), and a surge that requires careful team play and unit distancing, and for your opponent not to shrug off your blight bane.

So please, help me to see it folks. What's the deal here? I'm guessing it's just my inexperience, or a game-scaling issue. Thanks!

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One thing to keep in mind about Ardus is that when constructing armies, he allows all your units to have extra upgrades.  Also, with an attack at 3 that can do an auto-hit or auto-surge, he can be ptretty brutal in melee.  If you give him an upgrade with a good special ability on it, he can use that at 2.

I think while he may not feel like a big deal now, once the rest of the expansions hit and we have more upgrades and more surge abilities, he'll start living up to his potential.

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Heroes are in general, a notch above the rest in every regard.  I think the design concept is that they should stand out with "wow" power on the field able to shift the tides of battle single handily and both Ardus and Kari do that in their own way.

I think the Undead army is built upon a higher reliance of synergy more than the human army (arguably).  When Ardus engages you and you have any Blight he is a machine of death that no unit can withstand as defense counts for nothing.  He Is pure and simple a killer, but without blight he is definitely a bit more tame.

I think the big drawback of Kari is that  she is very susceptible to panic having no morale defense, which again is another major strength of Ardus, she has weaker dice and has no way to play off the rest of the army around her which Ardus most certainly can.  Panic is huge in this game, it turns the tide of battle far more then anything else.  

In a straight up one on one fight, with no Blight or other units around, definitly Kari is where you bet your money, but in most practical battle situations, that is not the case and I think in general, Ardus is the far bigger killer.

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Kari can shed banes easier than Ardus, as she can spam range attacks and rally. A worm spamming her with blight is never going to have any affect, other than forcing rallies as she shoots or moves. That's very powerful, and makes her less susceptable to moral as far as I can see. In every game I've had against her, banes just do not stick, as she can shed them at initiative 2 whilst filling you full of arrows. This in turn negates Ardus's advantage over her, (assuming he's actually managed to get into base to base with her.)

But that's really my point - Ardus performed well when the combo came off okay. Kari knocked it out of the park, every game, regardless of what's going on around her, for less points.

I'm guessing this will all change later on, when Ardus has more abilities to vamp off of. But for now, it seems imbalanced (to my very inexperienced eyes).

PS I've also found panic is heavily slanted towards affecting formations over single bases - a whole lot of panic results  being 'if this unit has more than one tray...' - so I don't think Kari is particularly susceptible here.

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16 minutes ago, BigKahuna said:

Heroes are in general, a notch above the rest in every regard.  I think the design concept is that they should stand out with "wow" power on the field able to shift the tides of battle single handily and both Ardus and Kari do that in their own way.

I think the Undead army is built upon a higher reliance of synergy more than the human army (arguably).  When Ardus engages you and you have any Blight he is a machine of death that no unit can withstand as defense counts for nothing.  He Is pure and simple a killer, but without blight he is definitely a bit more tame.

I think the big drawback of Kari is that  she is very susceptible to panic having no morale defense, which again is another major strength of Ardus, she has weaker dice and has no way to play off the rest of the army around her which Ardus most certainly can.  Panic is huge in this game, it turns the tide of battle far more then anything else.  

In a straight up one on one fight, with no Blight or other units around, definitly Kari is where you bet your money, but in most practical battle situations, that is not the case and I think in general, Ardus is the far bigger killer.

I disagree somewhat.  It depends on their usage.  Note I haven't played very many games yet, but Kari is amazingly brutal.  She is a ranged unit for the Daqan, and when we get the elves, she can allow you to add their archers.  She is incredibly fast allowing you to stay one step ahead of the other side and position her where you want.  And where you want her is flanking a rank-and-file unit close to several other units so she can damage multiple units at once.

I've noticed that the heroes seem to be designed to get in there and do a crapton of damage before they fall.  It's not hard to kill a hero.  They generally will fall in about two or three rounds.  But that's the point, really.  They wade in and win the war of attrition.

It seems to me that in RMG, moreso than other war games, is the concept of meaningful sacrifice.  Your troops are going to die.  They will.  And they will die quickly.  8 rounds may seem like a short span for a battle, but by round 6, there's not a lot left standing.  Like in chess, you're going to have to sacrifice to win, and the heroes are the best bang for your sacrificial buck.  Which one is the better value really remains to be seen.  They both have their strengths and it's up to your own playstyle to find the one you can use more effectively.  But I think they're pretty on par with each other when used correctly.

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38 minutes ago, Crifmer said:

MG, moreso than other war games, is the concept of meaningful sacrifice.  Your troops are going to die.  They will.  And they will die quickly.  8 rounds may seem like a short span for a battle, but by round 6, there's not a lot left standing.  Like in chess, you're going to have to sacrifice to win, and the heroes are the best bang for your sacrificial buck.  Which one is the better value really remains to be seen.  They both have their strengths and it's up to your own playstyle to find the one you can use more effectively.  But I think they're pretty on par with each other when used correctly.

Great point, I hadn't thought of it this way, but you may be right.

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I'm certainly not discounting Kari, she is well, a hero, very strong, but I disagree about her being able to shake of Bane easily, in fact, her ability to Rally while using her ranged attack is a useless gesture.  The issue with her is that she is too fast and that is the secret of taking her out.  The latest she can act is in phase 5 with a normal attack and her most common move even when anticipating Bane or trying to get rid of it will be combined with using her 2 (range) attack ability.  Which means that any Banes she gets afterwards will stick until the next round.  Killing her in-between is the trick and you effectively have the actions of every unit on the board to do it with since in the undead army everyone acts after initiative 2 pretty much always and at or after initiative 5 when applying banes.  

Consider that you can put Bane on her in any one of the following Initiatives.

1. Lancers: 6
2. Archers: 5
 

More than that, Ardus can pick up the Archers Bane ability on his attack or Lancers ability on initiative 2 (based on timing of initiative this could mean he acts after her).

Point is, Rallying with her will only remove the Banes from the previous round, everything put on her and used in the current round will stick and can be used. In particular if she attempts a ranged attack (which is kind of her move).

I understand of course that strategically you keep her well out of harms way and there in lays a lot of juking and counter juking and plenty of strategy and head games.  But the key to taking her out is using the synergy and timing of her actions against her.

 

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4 minutes ago, BigKahuna said:

More than that, Ardus can pick up the Archers Bane ability on his attack or Lancers ability on initiative 2 (based on timing of initiative this could mean he acts after her).

 

You are misreading Ardus. While he does get the surge abilities of nearby allied units, he does not gain their skills.

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3 minutes ago, Orcdruid said:

You are misreading Ardus. While he does get the surge abilities of nearby allied units, he does not gain their skills.

True, I stand corrected.  Still, I think for the most part, the strategy is there.  You can, bane Kari and leverage the banes in the same round and there is little she can do about it unless she forgoes attacking.

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Yeah the trick to taking out Kari is blight - getting rid of that white dice is huge. The only thing she can really do to counter is is to hang back and stack up inspiration tokens but that's not ideal. Target her with  any combination of Ardus, Archers or the Carrion Lancer's ability looking to get blights on her, always spending the blight on the white dice (only spend a blight on a mortal wound if you can be sure you can follow it up to finish her after taking a full Kari attack back)

Only inspiration tokens from earlier turns and the morale deck can save her from the necromancy, and that can only really last one turn. Even if she rallies at Initiative 2, the attack resolves before the Bonus Action to rally (you can still spend the blight before it gets removed by the Rally modifier).

It's not that she's 'better' than Ardus they both function as part of a cohesive force and require different approaches both to play and play against.

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41 minutes ago, Leowulf said:

Even if she rallies at Initiative 2, the attack resolves before the Bonus Action to rally (you can still spend the blight before it gets removed by the Rally modifier).

That is huge, and I did not know that! Thanks very much, that evens the field up a bit for my next encounter :)

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Just now, Ywingscum said:

Seems to me, to just level out the playing field against Kari, you really have to outplay your opponent.

so when I teach a new player, they will be playing Kari.

when I play an experienced player, house rule, 1 surge = 1 damage.

A lot is riding on Kari in regards to her melee ability as well.  While she is fairly evenly matched with Ardus for the most part, IF, FFG rules that her ability requires line of sight, it will definitely make her considerably less powerful as locking her down, will really lock her down to melee.  If they rule it does not, well, she'll be.. deadly engaged or not engaged as she will be able to continue to dish out ranged damage on the field even once you manage to trap her in an engagement.  As far as I know this hasn't been ruled as of yet officially or unofficially.

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2 hours ago, Leowulf said:

Yeah the trick to taking out Kari is blight - getting rid of that white dice is huge. The only thing she can really do to counter is is to hang back and stack up inspiration tokens but that's not ideal. Target her with  any combination of Ardus, Archers or the Carrion Lancer's ability looking to get blights on her, always spending the blight on the white dice (only spend a blight on a mortal wound if you can be sure you can follow it up to finish her after taking a full Kari attack back)

You don't spend blight to gain the mortal strike, you only need the blight on the target unit, and yes multiple instances of the surge ability can trigger off of just one blight token.

Another thing, when you spend the blight token the attacker chooses which die to remove.

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They're 2 different Heroes with two different play styles. As such they need to be played differently.

Kari is a loner she's good as a solo hero wrecking havoc on her own, just check out the lore guide.

Ardus is a team player, he really shines with troops around him to give him their abilities. I just can't wait for new units (maybe infantry expansion as an example) to add to his arsenal.

 

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i found Kari a bit easy to remove unless you give her the upgrade to ignore line of sight when using ranged attacks. Having her hide behind my spearmen tossing out her deadly attack was quite effective, since she was completely immune to any ranged retaliation (since nobody else had that upgrade, and i think its a hero only upgrade)

Ardus, especially if he pops the defense every sodding turn, can be a pain in the ass. The nickname "Blender" fits him.

 

Im kinda expecting Kari to get replaced as we get more heroes. Shes just not that impactful and doesnt give your army any kind of boon for her existence. Ardus not only gives upgrade access but he also has ALL the surges so he can add blight tokens if the archers are close enough or add Mortal Strikes if the Lancers are around.

Edited by Vineheart01

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The biggest difference is the synergies with the rest of the army.

Ardus synergizes well with the Waiqar and is also their most powerful combat unit. Not having the ability to take a greater number of upgrades on your units and losing the best unit for using the blight you put out hurts.

Kari, on the other hand, doesn't effect anything else if she isn't there.  For her points you can take a unit that may put out less damage, but is more resilient and might even fit your army build better.

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1 hour ago, Vineheart01 said:

i found Kari a bit easy to remove unless you give her the upgrade to ignore line of sight when using ranged attacks. Having her hide behind my spearmen tossing out her deadly attack was quite effective, since she was completely immune to any ranged retaliation (since nobody else had that upgrade, and i think its a hero only upgrade)

Ardus, especially if he pops the defense every sodding turn, can be a pain in the ass. The nickname "Blender" fits him.

 

Im kinda expecting Kari to get replaced as we get more heroes. Shes just not that impactful and doesnt give your army any kind of boon for her existence. Ardus not only gives upgrade access but he also has ALL the surges so he can add blight tokens if the archers are close enough or add Mortal Strikes if the Lancers are around.

Ardus definitely seems like he gets better as the size of your force expands. If there's some upgrade that you need a hero to carry to support your other units, Kari may be a great choice for that as she is very mobile. I think a lot will hinge on what sort of ranged infantry options get released for the humans. Being able to bring a unit of elf archers might end up being a big deal if humans don't get ranged infantry of their own. 

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Kari's rally doesn't help much against banes. The modifier happens after the action. She has a blight on her, she attacks, you spend the blight to get rid of a die, then she rallies and it gets her an inspiration token that only gets rid of one blight next round. You only need one blight on her the first round, 2 on her from there out to always be needing her attack.

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17 hours ago, BigKahuna said:

I'm certainly not discounting Kari, she is well, a hero, very strong, but I disagree about her being able to shake of Bane easily, in fact, her ability to Rally while using her ranged attack is a useless gesture.  The issue with her is that she is too fast and that is the secret of taking her out.  The latest she can act is in phase 5 with a normal attack and her most common move even when anticipating Bane or trying to get rid of it will be combined with using her 2 (range) attack ability.  Which means that any Banes she gets afterwards will stick until the next round.  Killing her in-between is the trick and you effectively have the actions of every unit on the board to do it with since in the undead army everyone acts after initiative 2 pretty much always and at or after initiative 5 when applying banes.  

Consider that you can put Bane on her in any one of the following Initiatives.

1. Lancers: 6
2. Archers: 5
 

More than that, Ardus can pick up the Archers Bane ability on his attack or Lancers ability on initiative 2 (based on timing of initiative this could mean he acts after her).

Point is, Rallying with her will only remove the Banes from the previous round, everything put on her and used in the current round will stick and can be used. In particular if she attempts a ranged attack (which is kind of her move).

I understand of course that strategically you keep her well out of harms way and there in lays a lot of juking and counter juking and plenty of strategy and head games.  But the key to taking her out is using the synergy and timing of her actions against her.

 

I wonder... If you got a free surge from the upgrade then rolled 2 surges, could you use the archers then the Lancer? Hmmmm

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11 hours ago, Vineheart01 said:

i found Kari a bit easy to remove unless you give her the upgrade to ignore line of sight when using ranged attacks. Having her hide behind my spearmen tossing out her deadly attack was quite effective, since she was completely immune to any ranged retaliation (since nobody else had that upgrade, and i think its a hero only upgrade)

Ardus, especially if he pops the defense every sodding turn, can be a pain in the ass. The nickname "Blender" fits him.

 

Im kinda expecting Kari to get replaced as we get more heroes. Shes just not that impactful and doesnt give your army any kind of boon for her existence. Ardus not only gives upgrade access but he also has ALL the surges so he can add blight tokens if the archers are close enough or add Mortal Strikes if the Lancers are around.

I prefer Mr. Fab Antlers. 

 

Kari is good but she wants elves. Ardus will just get stronger and better with every expansion. 

Edited by Lyraeus

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17 hours ago, Lyraeus said:

I wonder... If you got a free surge from the upgrade then rolled 2 surges, could you use the archers then the Lancer? Hmmmm

Yep. It's tough to pull off (need three surges and both a lancer and archers within 1-3), but glorious when you do. And the blight stays to need their attack back at you.

Edited by TallTonyB
Stupid phone.

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