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Wraithist

The Duskblade Solution

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I see lots of posts about the Uthuk and their apparent overpowered...ness. I think they're great and play exactly like they're supposed to. I don't play them because they're not subtle enough of a playstyle for me and while they're good now, I really think they're going to be overshadowed by new units and more importantly, new ways of thinking. They're great at what they do and I don't think FFG needs to change that because I'm continually astounded by how well they make the unit playstyle feel like the unit they represent.

That's also why I love Waiqar. They seem to have an answer for everything if you dig hard enough. They're getting some awesome tools with Man Batterson to get their damage output level with the other factions, and to add some shifty Vampire business to bring them to par with the even more shiftyness of the other factions.

The consensus has been that Threshers should be 4 health instead of 5. I disagree. With the upgrades we're starting to see, especially with Waiqar, that damage can be output by the sneakiest of units, the Reanimates.

The Uthuk strength is their speed and wounds, right? But their weakness is armor isn't it?

Upgrade%20-%20The%20Duskblade.pngUpgrade%20-%20Regenerative%20Magic.pngUpgrade%20-%20Ardus%20IxErebus.png

How bout Ardus embedded in a unit of Reanimates to give them the surge abilities of nearby units, get a 2x2 of worms to turn surges to hits. Get Maro with Duskblade and Regenerative Magic to make one surge cost the defender -1 Armor. If your unit has 3 threat, it only takes 2 hits +1 surge to remove a thresher tray and 3 hits  +1 surge to remove Ravos.  It's a 36 pt solution, not to mention the 40 points for Maro, but Maro can buff that unit. I think it would be good against other factions too. Cavalry has been meta heavy and this would turn a cavalry unit inside out. Mix it with a Raven Standard and you're hitting before most units all the time. 

Edited by Wraithist

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I've actually been working on this same line of thought. Results have been...mixed. Worms aren't great because of their initiative 5 attack - it's just too late. Instead, try:

2x2 Reanimate Archers, Combat Ingenuity, Master-Crafted Weapons

Sure, the archers can't use Master-Crafted Weapons on their ranged attacks, but the Ardus block can put them to great use, and the archers dump tons of blight. It's tough keeping them protected, but hopefully the Reanimates or Ankaur Maro can rescue them. Here's the full list:

http://tabletopadmiral.com/runewars/undead/p085u0bu12u29u3bu36p012u03u26p101u38u39

Reanimates [64] 4x3
Ardus IxErebus [23]
Support Carrion Lancer [6]
Cursed Signets [2]
Triumphant Cry [3]
Lingering Dead [3]
Total Unit Cost: 102

Reanimate Archers [32] 2x2
Master-Crafted Weapons [4]
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 42

Ankaur Maro [40] 1x1
The Duskblade [8]
Regenerative Magic [5]
Total Unit Cost: 53

 

196 points. Triumphant Cry is really good here. You attack an enemy on your front, destroy them, then rotate to face the one on your flank. Cursed Signets is because my Reanimates got locked down with stun and immobilize by a pair of Corruption Rune Berserkers. It wasn't pretty.

EDIT: I should add that I haven't yet tried the above iteration with The Duskblade. I have had blocker Carrion Lancers to protect my archers and benefit from the blight they dish out. It's been good, but I wonder if I really need blockers, which is why I think this version is worth trying out. I love how there are so many uses for surges: blight, hits, healing ardus, or taking away defense, but this also means you need to leverage those Reanimates supremely well. I think it can work, but I think you need to play really well to beat the Uthuk. It feels like it's their game to lose - this list is by no means an easy button. I did manage to destroy 2-trays Spined Threshers in one attack, which felt GREAT!

Edited by Parakitor

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The one success I've had was against Uthuk-stars. When there are many small units, they can get in and take out the Reanimates' support too easily. But I freely admit that I may just be playing below the level I need to in order to score a win.

(I was hoping to keep this a secret, then drop it on the community when I had amassed some wins, but I guess the cat's out of the bag. And even if I can't win with it, maybe some other crafty Waiqar players can make it work).

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The major problem I have with these ideas is that you are putting upgrades on units that wont use them. Maro is never in melee so duskblade won't do anything for him. Archers are never in melee so master-crafted won't do anything for them. 53 points for maro is so much for a unit whose only purpose is to plop down a a few trays of reanimates and give away a surge ability. He just isn't doing anything himself. @Parakitor your list has a really powerful reanimate unit. Can't argue that point. Maro and the archers won't directly contribute though. Also you don't have any way of protecting them. How you you stop a cav block just avoiding your reanimates and charging down 95 points of your list that won't be able to defend itself?

I much prefer @Wraithist's list with the lancers. At least then the lancers are a second fighting unit that has upgrades that both help them and the reanimate block. Still don't like that Maro build. Just too expensive for what he does.

Carrion Lancers [46] 2x2
Master-Crafted Weapons [4]
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 56

Reanimates [64] 4x3
Ardus IxErebus [23]
Raven Tabards [2]
Aggressive Drummer [5]
Moment of Inspiration [5]
Total Unit Cost: 99

Death Knights [24] 2x1
The Duskblade [8]
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 38

I think this would work better. All the units can use the upgrades they are equipped with and the reanimate block and borrow abilities from both other units. You have two units that can protect the flanks of the main force while still posing a threat themselves if another flanking unit comes after them.

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I'm about to ramble. You've been warned.

Try the Carrion Lancers if you want. They have been garbage against Spined Threshers, and Berserkers and Flesh Rippers are agile enough to stay out of their way so that all I can get are Spined Threshers. The only time I had success with Carrion Lancers against Uthuk was when I had Dispatch Runner at initiative 3 or 4 to make my 6 trays of worms swing before enemy units. That and sacrificing them to the Uthuk hordes as single tray blockers.

@Qark, I do like the idea of protecting the Reanimates' flanks, but I fear you'd lose them fairly quickly, and lose the synergy that makes the Reanimates so good.

Speaking of good Reanimates, I first tried this with Aggressive Drummer, but I found that my Reanimates got too far out of range to borrow surges. So then I tried just sitting back, and that's when I realized how good Triumphant Cry is.

My Reanimate Archers put up a heck of a fight, and I only 'waste' 4 points that can't be used on the Archers' attack, so they can hang back and do work. 2x2 means rerolls, which is awesome with Combat Ingenuity.

I agree, Ankaur Maro with Duskblade is not efficient use of points, especially because he needs Regenerative Magic to make it useful for the Reanimates, but it's a neat idea. Violent Forces Maro -OR- a 6-tray Reanimates with Ankaur Maro will be more effective. I think combining ranged units with the 12-tray is very good, but so is adding trays. I would sooner try these two than the Duskblade.

You asked how I'd protect them, and I think the answer is to hole up in a corner with Ankaur peeking out from behind, and archers on the other side. Eh, the more I think about it, the more I like Carrion Lancers blocking for the archers. My last game had 1 tray of Carrion Lancers blocking for the archers, and the other 3 on the opposite side of my Reanimates, which was bad. I think they all need to stick together. Here's that list:

http://tabletopadmiral.com/runewars/undead/p085u0buEMu29u3bu36p012u03u26p071uEMp071uEMp071uEMp071uEM

198/200

Reanimates [64] 4x3
Ardus IxErebus [23]
Blighted Vexillum Bearer [3]
Triumphant Cry [3]
Lingering Dead [3]
Total Unit Cost: 96

Reanimate Archers [32] 2x2
Master-Crafted Weapons [4]
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 42

Carrion Lancers [15] 1x1
Total Unit Cost: 15

Carrion Lancers [15] 1x1
Total Unit Cost: 15

Carrion Lancers [15] 1x1
Total Unit Cost: 15

Carrion Lancers [15] 1x1
Total Unit Cost: 15

The good thing here is that whatever the Carrion Lancers are attacking is blighted to kingdom come, so the fact that they don't attack until 5 is workable. Then, at i5 before the worms attack, the archers lay a bunch of blight down. The biggest problem is the morale test from firing into melee tends to give stun tokens to my Carrion Lancers. EDIT: And I don't have Cursed Signets because I'm afraid to run that without being able to add trays to make up for it.

Now if I could have your opinions, is 4 naked Carrion Lancers better here, or should I drop one to give them all Rank Discipline?

Edited by Parakitor

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40 minutes ago, Qark said:

Carrion Lancers [46] 2x2

Master-Crafted Weapons [4]
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 56

Reanimates [64] 4x3
Ardus IxErebus [23]
Raven Tabards [2]
Aggressive Drummer [5]
Moment of Inspiration [5]
Total Unit Cost: 99

Death Knights [24] 2x1
The Duskblade [8]
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 38

I think this would work better. All the units can use the upgrades they are equipped with and the reanimate block and borrow abilities from both other units. You have two units that can protect the flanks of the main force while still posing a threat themselves if another flanking unit comes after them.

You know what, rather than blocking the flanks, you could wait until the Reanimates get flanked, and charge the flank of the attackers. I feel better about a 2-tray Death Knights unit flanking Spined Threshers than facing one head on. Eh, probably not with your build. I do like Raven Tabards and Aggressive Drummer there. I'd like to see that in action, but it's not my style - I always find myself wishing I could charge later. ^_^

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My usual duskblade build is on deathknights, considerably less squishy than maro and about as points effeciant with combat ingenuity.

Ardus solo has some fun with this, but doesn't usually live very long, and embedded, gets 1 surge out if 8 die sides, so fairly rare.

Hopefully waiqars next unit is a blue dice infantry, which would fill a much needed gap in their meta.

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2 hours ago, Parakitor said:

You know what, rather than blocking the flanks, you could wait until the Reanimates get flanked, and charge the flank of the attackers.

Yeah protecting the flank isn't just blocking. This is exactly how classical rank and file combat would work when soldiers marched in a staggered formation.

 

2 hours ago, Parakitor said:

but I fear you'd lose them fairly quickly, and lose the synergy that makes the Reanimates so good. 

I still don't understand how the archers and maro are different? If something gets into combat with them they are much more squishy than lancers and death knights. Either way you are trying to prevent your dudes being killed long enough for your combos to go off.

 

2 hours ago, Parakitor said:

I think the answer is to hole up in a corner

This just feels like a bad way to play. If you have to sit in the corner to protect your army you'll lose on objective based scenarios.

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6 hours ago, Wraithist said:

I see lots of posts about the Uthuk and their apparent overpowered...ness. I think they're great and play exactly like they're supposed to. I don't play them because they're not subtle enough of a playstyle for me and while they're good now, I really think they're going to be overshadowed by new units and more importantly, new ways of thinking. They're great at what they do and I don't think FFG needs to change that because I'm continually astounded by how well they make the unit playstyle feel like the unit they represent.

That's also why I love Waiqar. They seem to have an answer for everything if you dig hard enough. They're getting some awesome tools with Man Batterson to get their damage output level with the other factions, and to add some shifty Vampire business to bring them to par with the even more shiftyness of the other factions.

The consensus has been that Threshers should be 4 health instead of 5. I disagree. With the upgrades we're starting to see, especially with Waiqar, that damage can be output by the sneakiest of units, the Reanimates.

The Uthuk strength is their speed and wounds, right? But their weakness is armor isn't it?

Upgrade%20-%20The%20Duskblade.pngUpgrade%20-%20Regenerative%20Magic.pngUpgrade%20-%20Ardus%20IxErebus.png

How bout Ardus embedded in a unit of Reanimates to give them the surge abilities of nearby units, get a 2x2 of worms to turn surges to hits. Get Maro with Duskblade and Regenerative Magic to make one surge cost the defender -1 Armor. If your unit has 3 threat, it only takes 2 hits +1 surge to remove a thresher tray and 3 hits  +1 surge to remove Ravos.  It's a 36 pt solution, not to mention the 40 points for Maro, but Maro can buff that unit. I think it would be good against other factions too. Cavalry has been meta heavy and this would turn a cavalry unit inside out. Mix it with a Raven Standard and you're hitting before most units all the time. 

Sorry, but I just can't hold my tongue on this one: That is pretty much a collection of Waiqar's most overcosted cards (including Ankaur). Duskblade at 8p, Ardus at 23p, Ankaur at 46p! 37p of upgrades to lower the defence of Ravos or Spined threshers by 1 (note that Berserkers and Flesh rippers already have 1 defence). I'm sticking my chin out (this is internet after all ;) and saying that after all the releases that have come out after Ankaur/Hawthorne, those should all have been cut in cost by 25-30% to be relevant. Duskblade should have been 1 surge to cost it at 8 in my oppinion.

The new Lord Werebat heavy upgrade will most likely pretty much accomplish the same, but at a fraction of the cost.

Still I hope someone (or myself) can prove me wrong, but man I just can't see it.

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57 minutes ago, Maktorius said:

Sorry, but I just can't hold my tongue on this one: That is pretty much a collection of Waiqar's most overcosted cards (including Ankaur). Duskblade at 8p, Ardus at 23p, Ankaur at 46p! 37p of upgrades to lower the defence of Ravos or Spined threshers by 1 (note that Berserkers and Flesh rippers already have 1 defence). I'm sticking my chin out (this is internet after all ;) and saying that after all the releases that have come out after Ankaur/Hawthorne, those should all have been cut in cost by 25-30% to be relevant. Duskblade should have been 1 surge to cost it at 8 in my oppinion.

Still I hope someone (or myself) can prove me wrong, but man I just can't see it.

EDITING TO ADD THIS: this post got away from me a little bit and gets a little hot under the collar. @Maktorius, this is not directed at you, merely answering your unasked question why Waiqar upgrades are costed the way they are. Please forgive any temper, it's not intended to be directed towards anyone

 

 

The problem with your assessment is Combat Ingenuity. The ability to make any surge ability in the faction that has more surge abilities than anyone else (oh, and can steal them from friendly units!) is incredible. Yes, CI costs points and takes a slot, but the whole point of Duskblade on Maro (as an example) is to shift that coast and slot *onto another unit*. 

Duskblade doesn't just lower the defense of Ravos and ST, but also Obscenes, Oathsworn, Rune Golems, Spearmen, Hawthorne, Kari, BZ, Death Knights, Maro, Carrion Lancers, Scions, Leonx, Meagan, Alianna, Ventala, and ANYTHING with shieldwall on it. The only units that Duskblade doesn't have a use against is Reanimates, as they're the only unit that is defense 1 and can't take shieldwall. (If I've forgotten one, please let me know) That's a lot of counter tech for 8 points, especially in a faction that *can put that tech on 2 units at a time*. Ardus being able to steal surge abilities and pass them on to any infantry unit with a champion slot (yes, I know, only Reanimates currently, but think of design space here) is massive. Whoever is wielding Duskblade doesn't need to be directly using it to offer it's benefits to the unit that does need it. Yeah, Master-Crafted Weapons+CI on Reanimate Archers makes little sense, but you know what it does do? Makes it available for Ardus by himself (who's probably equipped Ardus's Fury to take advantage of it) to get him up-to an inpressive 6 hits going into his damage pool. Oh, and they're consistent as **** too. All the sudden every surge and hit on his two white dice are hits. Or we can stick Ardus into a unit (and bring a white die along, just for kicks) and provide the same benefit. Or, we can do it with Tempered Steel, or Duskblade, or the Carrion Lancers surge, or the Leonx Riders surge, or the Flesh Ripper surge, or the deepwoods surge, ....

Geez, I'm gonna stop myself before I have a coronary.

Ardus and Combat Ingenuity get more options with every release that has a surge ability across the entirety of this game (except heroes, as Maro can't steal those).

 

As for Maro, he's great. Leave him alone at his cost of 46 points for VF. Sure, he's "overcosted" compared to other units in the game, but I can't take those other units in Waiqar (without taking him first at least) and he fills a role in the faction that nothing else currently does. Im fact, two roles. Either direct ranged damage or revi in trays of infantry. If he were 6 points cheaper and had VF baked into him, i'd be very hard pressed to *not* take him in almost every list. I consider the Runewars list building to be pretty well streamlined, as I have a damned hard time getting the "perfect" list under 203 or 204. I always have to find an upgrade to cut from the list, and making Maro 6 pts cheaper means I won't have to make that choice. I'll have every upgrade I want, and points for a bid as well. Has it occurred to players that possibly Maro is pointed the way he is to make exactly that the case? I really like to think the professionals who develop this game have the core competencies to do a decent job at it and also have enough sense to get competent playtesters to back them up. Let them do their jobs, and try and find the ways they handled these same problems you as the player are encountering.

 

 

OP, I commend you greatly for taking the time and initiative to try and find answers in differing places that what is already being played. Duskblade is a great piece of kit that Waiqar players have completely glossed over. Waiqar has one of the most powerful abilities in which to steal surges from friendly units and put them where they're needed. Use it, abuse it, and keep playing. Find things that other players couldn't even think about by trying cards that are considered "bad".

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1 hour ago, rebellightworks said:

EDITING TO ADD THIS: this post got away from me a little bit and gets a little hot under the collar. @Maktorius, this is not directed at you, merely answering your unasked question why Waiqar upgrades are costed the way they are. Please forgive any temper, it's not intended to be directed towards anyone

 

 

The problem with your assessment is Combat Ingenuity. The ability to make any surge ability in the faction that has more surge abilities than anyone else (oh, and can steal them from friendly units!) is incredible. Yes, CI costs points and takes a slot, but the whole point of Duskblade on Maro (as an example) is to shift that coast and slot *onto another unit*. 

Duskblade doesn't just lower the defense of Ravos and ST, but also Obscenes, Oathsworn, Rune Golems, Spearmen, Hawthorne, Kari, BZ, Death Knights, Maro, Carrion Lancers, Scions, Leonx, Meagan, Alianna, Ventala, and ANYTHING with shieldwall on it. The only units that Duskblade doesn't have a use against is Reanimates, as they're the only unit that is defense 1 and can't take shieldwall. (If I've forgotten one, please let me know) That's a lot of counter tech for 8 points, especially in a faction that *can put that tech on 2 units at a time*. Ardus being able to steal surge abilities and pass them on to any infantry unit with a champion slot (yes, I know, only Reanimates currently, but think of design space here) is massive. Whoever is wielding Duskblade doesn't need to be directly using it to offer it's benefits to the unit that does need it. Yeah, Master-Crafted Weapons+CI on Reanimate Archers makes little sense, but you know what it does do? Makes it available for Ardus by himself (who's probably equipped Ardus's Fury to take advantage of it) to get him up-to an inpressive 6 hits going into his damage pool. Oh, and they're consistent as **** too. All the sudden every surge and hit on his two white dice are hits. Or we can stick Ardus into a unit (and bring a white die along, just for kicks) and provide the same benefit. Or, we can do it with Tempered Steel, or Duskblade, or the Carrion Lancers surge, or the Leonx Riders surge, or the Flesh Ripper surge, or the deepwoods surge, ....

Geez, I'm gonna stop myself before I have a coronary.

Ardus and Combat Ingenuity get more options with every release that has a surge ability across the entirety of this game (except heroes, as Maro can't steal those).

 

As for Maro, he's great. Leave him alone at his cost of 46 points for VF. Sure, he's "overcosted" compared to other units in the game, but I can't take those other units in Waiqar (without taking him first at least) and he fills a role in the faction that nothing else currently does. Im fact, two roles. Either direct ranged damage or revi in trays of infantry. If he were 6 points cheaper and had VF baked into him, i'd be very hard pressed to *not* take him in almost every list. I consider the Runewars list building to be pretty well streamlined, as I have a damned hard time getting the "perfect" list under 203 or 204. I always have to find an upgrade to cut from the list, and making Maro 6 pts cheaper means I won't have to make that choice. I'll have every upgrade I want, and points for a bid as well. Has it occurred to players that possibly Maro is pointed the way he is to make exactly that the case? I really like to think the professionals who develop this game have the core competencies to do a decent job at it and also have enough sense to get competent playtesters to back them up. Let them do their jobs, and try and find the ways they handled these same problems you as the player are encountering.

 

 

OP, I commend you greatly for taking the time and initiative to try and find answers in differing places that what is already being played. Duskblade is a great piece of kit that Waiqar players have completely glossed over. Waiqar has one of the most powerful abilities in which to steal surges from friendly units and put them where they're needed. Use it, abuse it, and keep playing. Find things that other players couldn't even think about by trying cards that are considered "bad".

Since you are always motivating your answers I am not in the least offended, thank you for your consideration though, I appreciate it anyway :)

I understand your technical description and @Wraithist's idea (I also appreciate ideas brought forward even though I disagree), but even with your motivations, I believe the costs are just not relevant at this stage of what the other factions can put on the table against that. Duskblade is not something new, and I think most Waiqar players have already actively put it aside, for good reason. But as always, I sincerely would like to be proven wrong!

Edit: I also don't agree that Duskblade does much against infantry i practice. If you play Duskblade to defeat infantry, I'm not sure you have a very effective build.

Edited by Maktorius

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As others have said, I appreciate some outside the box thinking in trying to come up with alternative solutions.  Though think it’s unfair to suggest that people saying they think Uthuk currently have some overpowered elements haven’t done their due diligence and are just looking for an easy button because they don’t understand a different playstyle.

 

I think my hesitancy on some of these suggestions is just the amount of lost strength you are devoting to situational synergy that is taking away from potential combat power. This is further exacerbated if the units aren’t particularly strong independently, only when combining their effects.  It’s a different story if these are strong units that become even stronger when they can support each other. If you’re taking a unit that you don’t want to take on it’s own, but do so because it provides a niche ability or combo, you’re ultimately going to be starting behind the curve.

Also consider that because of the required proximity, a lot of your movement and actions will be pretty easy to telegraph for an opponent who knows your dials and initiatives.  And if you go outside that mold, you may gain back some surprise, but now your wasting the list efficiency you spent so many points trying to build.

Now enough with the nay-saying, the next Waiqar build I’m anxious to put on the table centers around a 3x2 Raven Steel archers, and a 3x3 Reanimates trying out the new bloodied tatters. The idea being archers and reanimates both attack at 4, which gives you options. Also after that first round of melee the reanimates can have a guaranteed 2+ panic resolution every round for the rest of the game. Admittedly this is reduced in effectiveness against threshers and ravos with their steadfast, but it’s also still high damage. Rounding out the list with a 2x2 of reaping knights, a single lancer, a 2x1 of fallen wraiths, and a handful of upgrades on the reanimates.

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6 hours ago, rebellightworks said:

Runewars list building to be pretty well streamlined, as I have a damned hard time getting the "perfect" list under 203 or 204. I always have to find an upgrade to cut from the list, and making Maro 6 pts cheaper means I won't have to make that choice. I'll have every upgrade I want, and points for a bid as well. 

Not to rub salt in the wound, but I have found several Uthuk lists that I am very happy with that come out to 200 points even.

Edited by Budgernaut

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5 hours ago, jcshep19 said:

Also consider that because of the required proximity, a lot of your movement and actions will be pretty easy to telegraph for an opponent who knows your dials and initiatives.  And if you go outside that mold, you may gain back some surprise, but now your wasting the list efficiency you spent so many points trying to build.

This is a fair point. I love the 4 lancers I posted upthread, but then you have to put your Reanimates down first, and place the rest of the list around them. One of the (few) advantages to having only 3 units is that you can better react to where your opponent places their forces, meaning you don't have to maneuver in reaction to their placement - you're already set for combat.

The other thing about Maro behind the 12-tray is that he's a small target next to a big target. You set your Reanimates so that all their forces converge on your Ardus block, and then just sweep them away like Sauron on the opening scene of The Lord of the Rings. The biggest weakness is that with Kethra out , all factions are able to attack my two support units at range, which makes them quite a bit weaker.

----

Okay, now to some more theorycrafting (this really should be in the List Building subforum, shouldn't it).

http://tabletopadmiral.com/runewars/undead/p085u0bu12u29u3bu36p113u38uEMu2fu26p011u26

197/200

Reanimates [64] 4x3
Ardus IxErebus [23]
Support Carrion Lancer [6]
Blighted Vexillum Bearer [3]
Triumphant Cry [3]
Lingering Dead [3]
Total Unit Cost: 102

Death Knights [55] 2x3
The Duskblade [8]
Raven Tabards [2]
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 71

Reanimate Archers [18] 2x1
Combat Ingenuity [6]
Total Unit Cost: 24

Here, we keep it down to 3 units, but the Death Knights have (hopefully) more rounds with rerolls in order to really put The Duskblade to good use. My problem with the 4 tray is that if you don't destroy a tray of Spined Threshers on the charge, you get hit back next round for 3 threat - and destroying a tray on the charge with 2 threat is by no means a guarantee, even with a surge to decrease their defense. Now, if you're first player that next round it's not so bad, but if they attack you first, you will most likely lose a tray and a half, and you will be down on rerolls for the next enemy. Not only that, but you don't last long enough to support Ardus' Reanimates, dying in just 2 rounds of combat. So I think the 6-tray is necessary.

The Reanimates have Support Carrion Lancer, because if Kethra is going to be sitting off in the distance lobbing shards of bones at us, we should probably take away one of her white dice by blighting her. I have kept Triumphant Cry because 1) you really need to be able to position to attack the next threat and 2) there are many times where I perform a turning march to attack the next enemy, and that's functionally identical to a turning charge, so I might as well just dial that in, so no need for Aggressive Drummer. If I'm sitting there planning to get charged, Blighted Vexillum Bearer really helps longevity. It also means when I wheel without Aggressive Drummer, I do something to the enemy unit, even though I don't get to attack. At the same time, being able to attack at 3 with Raven Standard Bearer can make a big difference on rounds where the opponent is first player: not only do I attack first, potentially killing an enemy unit, but if I succeed, I also get to reform before any unit flanking me gets to attack with their bonus dice. I think I may be talking myself into Raven Standard Bearer.

The Reanimate Archers hang back and shoot blight at whichever enemies come into range. If the opponent wants to send a unit down and around to take out an eight of my list, let them.

The two objectives that are problematic are Demoralize Their Forces and Volatile Runes. Now, on Volatile Runes, I could scoot my archers up to rain blight upon them, and urge them to attack while my Reanimates hang back behind the volatile runes, but Demoralize Their Forces I think I just lose...hmm.

...and now after putting all of my thoughts down in writing, I'm not pleased with this list. I don't think The Duskblade does enough. Master-Crafted Weapons is so much more helpful for the large block because it essentially makes the red dice 25% chance for double hit, and the white dice 33.3% chance of double hit. At 4 threat, that's pretty amazing, and it doesn't care whether the enemy is high armor or not. When those Flesh Rippers come in with their 1 defense, you'd better hope the Reanimate Archers are still alive so you can borrow their surge-to-blight ability, otherwise your skeletons will get shredded.

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6 hours ago, jcshep19 said:

I think my hesitancy on some of these suggestions is just the amount of lost strength you are devoting to situational synergy that is taking away from potential combat power.

What combat power? When I look at Waiqar, all I see is synergy and not-dying. Not-dying just makes you lose less badly, so the synergy has to bring the wins.

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6 minutes ago, Parakitor said:

...and now after putting all of my thoughts down in writing, I'm not pleased with this list. I don't think The Duskblade does enough. Master-Crafted Weapons is so much more helpful for the large block because it essentially makes the red dice 25% chance for double hit, and the white dice 33.3% chance of double hit. At 4 threat, that's pretty amazing, and it doesn't care whether the enemy is high armor or not. When those Flesh Rippers come in with their 1 defense, you'd better hope the Reanimate Archers are still alive so you can borrow their surge-to-blight ability, otherwise your skeletons will get shredded.

Embrace the slowness of the DKs, drop the Raven Banner for 2 pts to give master crafted to your archers for your reanimate block.

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9 minutes ago, Parakitor said:

What combat power? When I look at Waiqar, all I see is synergy and not-dying. Not-dying just makes you lose less badly, so the synergy has to bring the wins.

If I may; combat power AND not-dying is to me the same as not wasting points. You must get your points worth (albeit ones choice is of course situational). Paying 14p for the duskblade combo on Death Knights, instead of putting a Lancer or 2x1 Reanimates on the table, have a not miniscule risk of being a waste. Ading 23p Ardus in a reanimate blob for the surge on the white die is criminal (if your purpouse is to serve Waiqar)!

Edited by Maktorius

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16 minutes ago, Glucose98 said:

Embrace the slowness of the DKs, drop the Raven Banner for 2 pts to give master crafted to your archers for your reanimate block.

I agree, I put Raven Tabards in there just because everybody says it's good. I shouldn't turn my back on my own play style. But unfortunately, the Reanimates can't take Master-Crafted Weapons at 2 trays, and I can't upgrade to 4 trays without gutting the Ardus block so it has no upgrades. Only 2 points remain in the list, so I can't even take Lingering Dead!

12 minutes ago, Maktorius said:

If I may; combat power AND not-dying is to me the same as not wasting points. You must get your points worth (albeit ones choice is of course situational). Paying 14p for the duskblade combo on Death Knights, instead of putting a Lancer or 2x1 Reanimates, have a not miniscule risk of being waste. Adding 23p Ardus for the surge on the white die is criminal (if your purpouse is to serve Waiqar)!

You know what, that's fair. Chasing after synergy can be problematic, so you have to go about it wisely. But let me respond to your last remark: WHAT?

Am I to understand that you don't think 23 points of Ardus upgrade is worth it? We will just have to agree to disagree there. Adding a white die is awesome, and when you already have Combat Ingenuity archers in your army...so good! There is a surge on the red die, too, and boy do they come up when you're rerolling. The blight-swing is fantastic for increasing the longevity of that unit, and I've just started borrowing Master-Crafted Weapons, and it seriously bumps up the damage output.

But you know what? You may have a point. I will try the Ardus block a bunch more in the coming weeks, and then I'll try other lists and see how the 12-tray fares without him, especially keeping my eye towards what else I pick up for those 23 points. Trying out both sides is the only way to be sure. I just hope I can get that many games in.

Edited by Parakitor

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54 minutes ago, Parakitor said:

Am I to understand that you don't think 23 points of Ardus upgrade is worth it? We will just have to agree to disagree there. Adding a white die is awesome, and when you already have Combat Ingenuity archers in your army...so good! There is a surge on the red die, too, and boy do they come up when you're rerolling. The blight-swing is fantastic for increasing the longevity of that unit, and I've just started borrowing Master-Crafted Weapons, and it seriously bumps up the damage output.

I agree that all of those are awesome effects, but the cost is just too steep imho! As i mentioned earlier in this thread, I think that with the current resistance to Waiqar, he should be 16p or lower. At the moment (as I've now ranted endlessly about on the forum) I'll pick Lord Werebat's brutal 1 for 8p every day of the week over Ardus champion.

Edit: But if he had a free surge a'la Ardus fury, then I would play him.

Edited by Maktorius

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I see a lot of people dogging how many surge opportunities the list has as an option rolling two red and a white, and while I agree it is low you're forgetting this list also goes three back and potentially 4 back with Maro adding trays giving you many many rerolls. @Wraithist and I talked about this list and I think it'd be great, everyone is griping about the berserkers and the Flesh Rippers and yes they are still scary, but the problem is how long you wrestle with the ST and the Ravos that makes them so scary. Killing ST and Ravos and allowing more of your army to then focus on the FR and Berserkers make them a lot less scary.

A list I told him I think would be really fun is:

199/200                                                               

4x3 Reanimates [64]

                Vorun’thul the Cursed [8]

                Raven Standard Bearer [3]

                Lingering Dead [3]

                Necromancer [3]

                                Total Unit 81

3x2 Reanimates [35]

                Maro [20]

                                Total Unit 55

2x1 Reanimate Archers [18]

                Combat Ingenuity [6]

                                Total Unit 24

2x1 Reanimate Archers [18]

                Combat Ingenuity [6]

                                Total Unit 24

1x1 Carrion Lancer [15]

                                Total Unit 15

 

This list focuses on adding trays, blighting to not take as many hits and with Brutal 5 a high damage output. I do like the idea of fitting triumphant cry into this so maybe dropping necromancer or RSB, but hopefully you're not getting flanked much with good blockers. This list will just be doing so much damage with many times being 4 rows deep with 3 rerolls.

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17 hours ago, Maktorius said:

Sorry, but I just can't hold my tongue on this one: That is pretty much a collection of Waiqar's most overcosted cards (including Ankaur). Duskblade at 8p, Ardus at 23p, Ankaur at 46p! 37p of upgrades to lower the defence of Ravos or Spined threshers by 1 (note that Berserkers and Flesh rippers already have 1 defence). I'm sticking my chin out (this is internet after all ;) and saying that after all the releases that have come out after Ankaur/Hawthorne, those should all have been cut in cost by 25-30% to be relevant. Duskblade should have been 1 surge to cost it at 8 in my oppinion.

The new Lord Werebat heavy upgrade will most likely pretty much accomplish the same, but at a fraction of the cost.

Still I hope someone (or myself) can prove me wrong, but man I just can't see it.

I agree this is insanely expensive. I think that the potential for new units and new surges to make Ardus an exploit is probably what explains the points. I'm waiting on a clarification on this one because I can really see it going either way (of course I think it's obvious I'm in favor of it)

But what if you can spend the Chiropthrope's ;) unique surge to increase the Ardus unit's threat by 1, then you would only need one more surge to reduce armor by one. Threat increase mixed with armor decrease is pretty much the definition of insane and I think worth the points that seem - at least at the moment - to be extreme. 

Edited by Wraithist

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Allow me to describe why Ardus upgrade is so good in my opinion. First, let's look at the upgrade for Vorun'thul the Cursed. For just 8 points, you are getting an increase in threat, and trading out a red die for an upgraded white die. But look at the dice: the red die has a 62.5% chance of rolling a hit, and the white die has a 75% chance. But that's just 2 hits, for 10 total damage. If you get lucky, and get double hit on both dice, that's where it gets really cool with 20 damage. But you're spending 81 points to deal 10 damage each time you attack. I'm not wild about that.

Ardus on the other hand, rolls 2 reds and a white - for just the cost of single tray Carrion Lancer (15 points more than Vorun'thul the Cursed). With a Master-Crafted Weapons nearby, he also bumps the chances of double hit from 12.5% to 25% on a red die, and from 8.3% to 41% on the white die! And 83% chance to deal any hit on the white die! Talk about consistency! He will almost always roll at least 12 damage, and often gets 16, with a max of 24 - which is honestly overkill, but whatever.

Now, I don't feel great spending 100 points on a unit doing 12 damage each turn, but getting 16 or 20 damage is not out of the ordinary for this build, and I think it's necessary in order to take things out fast. Consider that a Carrion Lancer can armor up to require 12 damage to take out. With Vorun'thul the Cursed upgrade, you could be just shy of destroying it, meaning it holds up your 81 point unit for an extra turn if you don't manage to roll a double hit on one of the dice. Just something to think about.

At this point, I think I just need to put it on the table some more so I can feel the consequences of its weaknesses, because if I'm being honest with myself, I think I'm infatuated with this idea, and can't see the flaws, or at least am willing myself not to see the flaws. I'll be back next week with some more experience.

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15 minutes ago, Parakitor said:

Allow me to describe why Ardus upgrade is so good in my opinion. First, let's look at the upgrade for Vorun'thul the Cursed. For just 8 points, you are getting an increase in threat, and trading out a red die for an upgraded white die. But look at the dice: the red die has a 62.5% chance of rolling a hit, and the white die has a 75% chance. But that's just 2 hits, for 10 total damage. If you get lucky, and get double hit on both dice, that's where it gets really cool with 20 damage. But you're spending 81 points to deal 10 damage each time you attack. I'm not wild about that.

Ardus on the other hand, rolls 2 reds and a white - for just the cost of single tray Carrion Lancer (15 points more than Vorun'thul the Cursed). With a Master-Crafted Weapons nearby, he also bumps the chances of double hit from 12.5% to 25% on a red die, and from 8.3% to 41% on the white die! And 83% chance to deal any hit on the white die! Talk about consistency! He will almost always roll at least 12 damage, and often gets 16, with a max of 24 - which is honestly overkill, but whatever.

Now, I don't feel great spending 100 points on a unit doing 12 damage each turn, but getting 16 or 20 damage is not out of the ordinary for this build, and I think it's necessary in order to take things out fast. Consider that a Carrion Lancer can armor up to require 12 damage to take out. With Vorun'thul the Cursed upgrade, you could be just shy of destroying it, meaning it holds up your 81 point unit for an extra turn if you don't manage to roll a double hit on one of the dice. Just something to think about.

At this point, I think I just need to put it on the table some more so I can feel the consequences of its weaknesses, because if I'm being honest with myself, I think I'm infatuated with this idea, and can't see the flaws, or at least am willing myself not to see the flaws. I'll be back next week with some more experience.

This is a pretty good take. Rolling an extra die is extremely strong, and going from Threat 4 to 5 is not often a very big deal. I think Vorun'thul the Cursed as a heavy upgrade will be best on a 3x3 - 58 points gets you a very durable Threat 4 unit which can be tuned to taste.

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