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jcshep19

Two Latari lists: just different, or better?

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So I have two adjusted Latari builds I've been waiting to try out.  I'm going to end up playing them both, but wanted to get people's thoughts on them first, which they think is better and any minor tweaks.
 
First one: (169/31 ratio)
200/200
Prince Faolan [36] 1x1
Legendary Prowess [5]
Total Unit Cost: 41

Darnati Warriors [43] 3x2
Raven Tabards [2]
Total Unit Cost: 45

Leonx Riders [30] 2x2
Aliana of Summersong [12]
Raven Tabards [2]
Total Unit Cost: 44

Ventala Skirmishers [30] 2x2
Total Unit Cost: 30

Deepwood Archers [30] 2x2
Maegan Cyndewin [10]
Total Unit Cost: 40
 
Pros: Faolan, Darnati, and Leonx all have strong initiative to win out the short charge battle.  Ventala are there for the flanking harassing fire and the opportune flank charge, and Meagan Archers are there to primarily fish for surges to splash as much as possible, but can switch over to low-med damage as necessity/runes permit.  I like that I'm getting a sizable force on the table, and able to do med-high damage across multiple fronts.
 
Cons:  Winning the charge game CAN be terrible against an enemy who's anticipating it, particularly for those init4+ return attacks.  Leonx get the worst of that I think.  Not necessarily Cons but more trade offs is: no 1 or 2 heavy hitters to help win that initial momentum, and light on upgrades means each unit has less tricks up their sleeves to get them out of a bind.
 
 
 
Second one:
199/200
Prince Faolan [36] 1x1
Legendary Prowess [5]
Total Unit Cost: 41

Darnati Warriors [43] 3x2
File Leader [6]
Shield Wall [5]
Greenwatch Herald [3]
Hedge Shroud [2]
Total Unit Cost: 59

Leonx Riders [30] 2x2
Aliana of Summersong [12]
Bull Pennon [3]
Metered March [2]
Lay of the Land [4]
Total Unit Cost: 51

Ventala Skirmishers [30] 2x2
Hunters Guile [4]
Total Unit Cost: 34

Aymhelin Scions [14] 1x1
Total Unit Cost: 14
 
Pros: Modified based off the first one.  Really wanted to try and maximize the Darnati and give them some staying power.  I've been experimenting with them for awhile and have tried out multiple options (warsong, wind rune, LotL, TS, etc)  but inevitably, even when I the charge or win the maneuver battle and even get a flank, that return attack or next turn attack more often than not tips the engagement into "unwinnable" for the Darnati.  File Leader was inspired by @Jukey‘s latest exploits.  Unless someone is aware of something different, shield wall and Hedge Shroud CAN stack? Optimal Scenario bumping them up to Armor 4 for the turn, but more likely one or the other being better suited given a particular turn, and then rally/reform after combat to line up the next threat.  Greenwatch and Hunters Guile are there to provide what I think is a pretty low cost and versatile Overgrowth strategy with some additional situational benefits.  Changed the Leonx build to try and maximize the benefit of winning the charge and win the fight via morale deck instead of just damage.
 
Cons: Had to downgrade the Meagan splashing archers to a single scion to free up the points for upgrades.  Darnati are pretty heavy at 59, and while I think they'll be completely worth it, the "baiting the enemy charge" strategy can backfire heavily, particularly matched up against a weaker unit, potentially wasting valuable turns (though this principle applies to unit match ups as a whole).  The Leonx is probably the more potentially dangerous "points sink" at 51, as they are really depending on winning that charge and spiking damage/effects before taking a return attack.  
 
Overall comparatively lighter on the plastic in exchange for what I think are strong upgrades in the second list.  In general I keep more of a "plastic > cardboard" mentality.  Right now I'm leaning more toward the 2nd list, but am aware that may be more due to it being more of a new idea for me, as I've been working variations closer to the 1st list more recently when I do play Elves.
 
Thoughts?

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When I did the archer thread in tactics I only found Hunters guile to be worth it for raw damage at threat 3. Even then, only on ArcherStars that were loaded. 

 

If you aren’t using it to convert the Ventala back to Blue-Blue to trigger surge effects (Maegan) it is just not worth it in that 2x2. Take Tempered. With Faolon you can get an inspiration on them even past Ravos’ panic to get repeated use out of it. 

Edited by Church14

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I like what you have in the second build, but definately would recommend switching the ventala to tempered steel and hedge shroud. Tempered raises their damage output a lot, and hedge shroud has been the difference of losing a whole rank to losing a figure.

Shield wall does stack on hedge shroud as far as I know.

If you are leaning into a hedge build, it's best with malcornes to insure 2+ green runes, and if you really want to play engagement games with the leonx, put etharyon on faolan, combo with LotL and you get some really bouncy, flanky cats.

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@Church14

Good call on the extra inspiration. Yeah hunters guile for me has always pretty much been dead on arrival and not worth the points.  In that list I’m essentially treating the card as having the text “Hunters Guile: Overgrow 1”. Outside a late game Hail Mary fishing for a MS against 3+ armor, I can’t see a legit reason for changing a die within the Ventala as I have them.

 

So the only reason I’m bringing it is for overgrow, so that way I have one terrain piece (pre-deployment) with a token, and then one token (post-deployment, which I think is huge) with some restrictions to place. I think hedge shroud can be strong but if you’re relying on a single token that’s a severe limitation and tiny part of the board you’re tethered to.  I don’t know of another non-infantry champ that could get the overgrow. 

 

TS is basically the gold standard of upgrade cards (outside maybe rank) across all factions for units that can take it, so no convincing needed there.  Making that switch could also allow for hedge shroud on the ventala bringing it to a clean 200pts, still suffering the same limitation but at least there’s potentially less telegraphing.

 

More drastically, could drop file leader for verdant Sorc for Ovrgw 2, and Hunters for TS/Hedge on the Ventala, and maybe metered for good measure. That certainly opens up the board more for overgrowth.  But I reeeeally like the idea of file leader.

 

two quick rules questions for the gurus out there:

1: overgrowth token from greenwatch, could you place that on a terrain piece, provided the terrain meets the same range req, and if so Can you then measure overgrowth range from the entire terrain as normal?

 

2: I had always dismissed file leader before as my interpretation of the “this (melee) can only be performed while your command dial is revealed with a (melee) selected” as meaning post activation. Example: Darnati have a init4 melee selected, gets charged at init3, file leader does not trigger. If they were charged at init5, it WOULD trigger. Is that correct?

 

If so, then yeah Raven has to be stapled on Darnati with that to help compensate for the short charge. In which case the alt change I listed above is what I’m thinking is the best bet for that second list.

Edited by jcshep19

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29 minutes ago, jcshep19 said:

Yeah hunters guile for me has always pretty much been dead on arrival and not worth the points.  In that list I’m essentially treating the card as having the text “Hunters Guile: Overgrow 1”.

Jukey just reminded me that HG gives Overgrow and I keep forgetting. 

For Q1: Is never thought about it, but a quick reading of rules just says that terrain with an Overgrow token is overgrown. Greenwatch sets no limits outside of range. I’ll let others who want to spend more time on this chime in, but it seems like Greenwatch could deploy its token on terrain and make that terrain overgrown. 

 

Q2: Yeah. File leader does not work pre-dial revealed

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I've been getting a ton of mileage out of Maegan in the 2x2 Ventala with fire rune.

Once the battle lines hit, I've been able to shoot and skill (fire rune shoot) to double down on Maegan bubble of pain, firing twice with red and blue gives a lot of options for surges and pretty consistent damage as well.

I'd swap the 2x2 archers for a 2x1.  Points saved helps pick up fire runes on both units.

 

-Matt

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The idea to place that overgrowth token on a terrain is a nifty idea that I hadn't thought of.  But I think the others have the right of the rules there, so yes, good to know.  The real benefit of the Greenwatch Herald is being able to build an overgrowth strategy that does not depend upon terrain placement and which can be triggered from wherever you need to trigger it.

Hunter's Guile:  The damage bonus has to be thought of as a very small token gift.  For the 4 points you pay, I've calculated that it is really peanuts compared to what any upgrade that adds a die or grants a reroll will do.  So it really should only be brought in a list where you want a small but meaningful damage boost on one unit, while also granting the overgrown terrain on another object.  Another way to look at the damage boost is as a variance reducer.  Blue dice can be really flaky, even with rerolls, on whether they hit or not.  The white die drops that variance significantly, with makes 2x1 Archers much more likely to have 4 damage showing, and the 3x2 much more likely to be at 6.  In a game where it counts that you do exactly the damage you need, when you need to do it, this small effect cannot be underestimated.

 

List review:  Although there's always the possibility that a good player can put any list on the table and do well with it, neither list feels fully synergized to me.  Both lists bring Faolan, but the first list doesn't take a great advantage of his early inspiration token.  The upgrades feel a little too light, and a couple of critical upgrades would greatly up the potential in the list.  So that takes us to the list 2, which drops a lot more upgrades into the list.  Here, I'm not sure the list elements blend in naturally.  Sure, you can do some awesome things, WHEN the opponent cooperates, but a skilled opponent will try to make it as difficult as possible for you to stay in Hedge Shroud range.  He doesn't have to charge you.  He can simply maneuver and attack the other units.   You do not merely want the Overgrowth and defensive upgrades to keep the Darnati around, you want something in your list that will force him to attack them unfavorably.  In this respect, I think you need more reliable ranged damage.  For example, I'd leave your Leonx with fewer upgrades, and use the difference on Archers.  You're also much much better off putting a 2x2 Archers with Greenwatch, possibly Rallying Starling as well.

The others have also noted some of the key upgrade combos.  For example, Jukey's latest battle report stems from some of our conversations and a list I've been using:

Ventala Skirmishers [30] 2x2
Tempered Steel [3]
Hedge Shroud [2]
Total Unit Cost: 35

Deepwood Archers [30] 2x2
Tempered Steel [3]
Greenwatch Herald [3]
Rallying Starling [4]
Hunters Guile [4]
Total Unit Cost: 44

Prince Faolan [36] 1x1
Malcornes Bequest [6]
Etharyon of the Ailatar [5]
Total Unit Cost: 47

Aymhelin Scions [42] 2x2
Pathwalkers Amulet [3]
Fertile Soil [5]
Total Unit Cost: 50

Leonx Riders [18] 2x1
Rank Discipline [4]
Total Unit Cost: 22

 

 

 

This starts to get at some of the upgrade choices the others have suggested.  You can probably put a 3x2 Darnati in place of the Scions.  You might have to tweak other upgrades in the list somewhere in the list, but the playability should be similar.  We shouldn't be surprised if a lot of builds look alike, because most units and sizes have optimal configuration.  Jukey and I have pretty much figured that 2x2 TS/HS is the sweet spot for them.  Ventala really need to be played with the idea that they are both melee and ranged, and can switch as needed.  Since you won't always have a surge icon to trigger Tempered, you're mostly playing defensively and hoping to trigger it a couple of times if the opportunity arises.  You also make good use of the hit modifier on your melee attack better.  Leonx:  I keep going back and forth on these.  The 2x1 RD is a real sweet spot, because it will hit as hard as a 2x2 with several upgrades whenever it flanks.  And if the opponent decides to attack it, they've basically got to chase down a cheap unit while the rest of the army wastes them.

 

Darth Matthew's Fire Rune build has promise, though if I'm going to bring a list that is Rune dependent, I'm almost always going to bring Malcorne's, and then I'm going to build a list that is not rune dependent in different ways.  For example, I could see the 2x2 Fire Rune Ventala mixing with 2x1 Scions that are pretty much always armoring up.  It is just if you end up rerolling to max your red runes for Fire Rune, you're rolling away from Green some of the time and weakening Hedge Shroud.  And just not taking Malcorne's, but instead letting the runes lie seems to flaky for me.  You are going to get all the runes in all the wrong ways far too often of the time.

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Ventala with fire rune and meagan are the highest fire rune damage output capable (14 to be exact). However, I find they are a little clumsy with fire rune, since unless you are waiting until i8 to double tap, you have to choose between fire and normal ranged. They do gain the option of early movement with a ranged attack though. I guess its largely dependant on if you want priced ventala or not.

For ultimate meagan splash, darnati can actually do better than deepwoods, for the fact that seeing an extra die result is better than gambling a full roll on precise. No ranged means getting up close and personal though. Recommend pathwalker and hedge on the 2x2 for best results.

Not certain if greenwatch token makes terrain overgrown, as it says this token is treated as overgrown terrain. Since it isnt a unit not sure it would convert the terrain. 

An important part to remember with overgrow and hedge is you never need to be closer than range 2. Hedge only kicks in on 2 or 3 greens, so the bubble of effect is 2-3, which covers a lot of ground.

Happy to see so much latari theorycrafting here!

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I tend to think of Fire Rune in terms of averages.  Of course, it could be really good for you, or really a bust, depending upon what you and the opponent bring in terms of Rune manipulation.  Supposing no one brings it and you manage to set up your ideal shots:   1.78*2 = 3.56+1.5 (average Green) = 5.06.  Then the fire Rune averages 2 red, which since you are threat two, is the same as the first roll, so 10.12.   Now, if you can bring Rune manipulation into effect, the frequency of 2 and 4 red runes goes up extremely: about 68% chance of two red, 6.25% chance for no red, and 25% chance of two, or 3.22 average red runes.  You're losing out on some chance of Green for maeghan, so likely somewhere around 11.29 total damage off the unit.  That's a pretty impressive amount of damage for one round, but at 47 points, a number of other units can take themselves into that kind of territory (2x2 Leonx/Aliana/MoI is exactly 47 points).  So its nice, and a good build, but for the points, I start to worry about how it constricts my dial.  If you aren't dialing in both attacks, you've got a huge point sink in your list.  If you're not moving to range-3 or less so that you pick up the extra die, you've got a huge point sink in your list.

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Good points all around.

 

I've got a fair bit of mileage with Maegan Archers w/ Fire, while I can see the uses, I think I'll keep that on the bench for now.  I've also decided I've had quite a few reps with the style of the first list I posted, so I think I'm going to try out the second list, and then a variant of it:

 

199/200

Prince Faolan [36] 1x1
Malcornes Bequest [6]
Legendary Prowess [5]
Total Unit Cost: 47

Darnati Warriors [43] 3x2
Verdant Sorceress [3]
Shield Wall [5]
Greenwatch Herald [3]
Hedge Shroud [2]
Total Unit Cost: 56

Leonx Riders [30] 2x2
Aliana of Summersong [12]
Bull Pennon [3]
Hedge Shroud [2]
Total Unit Cost: 47

Ventala Skirmishers [30] 2x2
Tempered Steel [3]
Hedge Shroud [2]
Total Unit Cost: 35

Aymhelin Scions [14] 1x1
Total Unit Cost: 14
 

Originally had LotL on the Leonx and Raven on Darnati, but decided last minute to triple down on the hedge shroud and free up a point for greenwatch again.   I think the overgrowth 2 from the sorceress COMBINED with the post deployment greenwatch token can lead to a pretty significant coverage area across the board.  

I think file leader can still make a big difference for the Darnati (play them against a fair amount of Uthuk with a beserkerstar)  and I think that might help answer some of that, combined with everything else.

 

Maybe after I give them both a few goes I'll try a hybrid, though the only way I see that happening is dropping the Leonx for some Archers to shoulder some of the upgrades, but don't think I'll like the reduction in more melee.

 

Side note: I've seen you guys try out some of the other Faolan upgrades, and I know I need to switch even if it's just to try it out, but I'm a big fan of Legendary, I run him primarily as a duelist and have been having good success.  One of these days I'll switch it up...one day...

 

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On ‎12‎/‎19‎/‎2018 at 1:31 PM, Jukey said:

Ventala with fire rune and meagan are the highest fire rune damage output capable (14 to be exact). However, I find they are a little clumsy with fire rune, since unless you are waiting until i8 to double tap, you have to choose between fire and normal ranged. They do gain the option of early movement with a ranged attack though. I guess its largely dependant on if you want priced ventala or not.

For ultimate meagan splash, darnati can actually do better than deepwoods, for the fact that seeing an extra die result is better than gambling a full roll on precise. No ranged means getting up close and personal though. Recommend pathwalker and hedge on the 2x2 for best results.

Not certain if greenwatch token makes terrain overgrown, as it says this token is treated as overgrown terrain. Since it isnt a unit not sure it would convert the terrain. 

An important part to remember with overgrow and hedge is you never need to be closer than range 2. Hedge only kicks in on 2 or 3 greens, so the bubble of effect is 2-3, which covers a lot of ground.

Happy to see so much latari theorycrafting here!

I've found I get 2 shots with the Ventala as I close in (always take metered march), at an init 7 or 8 and green shoot mod, using their ability to bank if I need to, and metered march to stay safe..  I'll have a few Scions work as screens so once an enemy is pinned, I'm safe to double fire.  So far, with use of a pair of scions, I've been able to get within range 3 and double tap for at least 2 turns a game.

If you get Zero red runes, you're still either doing surge as splash damage to the target and every enemy at range 1; or you can just deal green as lethal. 

 

 

 

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