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AoS Sunclaw Starhost at UK Masters

Discussion in 'Seraphon Tactics' started by Lhurgoyf, Jan 10, 2018.

  1. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Meh, they simply don't need a flat buff. They need some (minor) reworking. Tone down the horde bonus in exchange for upgrading the base stats for example. Or change the shield bonus to also serve a more general purpose, say it gives re-rolls if the attack has no rend. Or take a hard look at how much value the banner and musician actually give, especially the musician now that we can teleport. Or just change how horde bonusses work in general (I like the skaven one that's just "if you have more dudes", a unit of 10 still gets the bonus in most engagements in that system).

    Also, I'm curious, how reliable is the optimum case? Getting all 40 in range to both bite and use their weapon seems unlikely to ever happen (unless your opponent is being mindbogglingly bad), and 2 rows of 10 spears is still only 40 spears and 20 bites under the best circumstances. In a sunclaw with re-rolls from the sunblood & the starpriest's venom that'd force, 15 saves with -1 rend from the spear and like 5 from the bites 1 or 2 of which might be double damage. That's not exectly asthonishing...

    Is it somehow weirdly common for horde units to get the entire horde in range or something? Cuz if it's not even the best realistic circumenstances aren't exactly overwhelming.
     
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  2. Aginor
    OldBlood

    Aginor Well-Known Member

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    With a clever pile-in you can get a lot of guys into range quite often. It is not too severe for Saurus because of their 32mm bases but I have managed to get 30+ Skeletons (those are on 25mm bases so the third row can fight if you use spears and get into base contact) into attacking range more than once, and boy, even though their attacks suck they become pretty devastating then, just because you are throwing 90 attacks at the enemy, and with Danse Macabre those might even be 180 attacks per round. Huge grin on my face, not so much for my opponent.
    Ardboyz on the other hand don't have 2" range weapons available so my Ironjawz-playing friend often complains that big hordes are hardly worth it, because only one row actually can make attacks. The rest are just additional wounds standing around.


    I think Saurus Warriors should receive a small buff to make them viable without having 40 of them. My initial, conservative suggestion would be to lower the threshold for the horde buffs, to 15 and 20 instead of 20 and 30. That would still encourage people to build big units (because of the point reduction) while keeping them effective below 30 models in the unit. It would not make them GREAT and it wouldn't mess with the complex synergies that are hard to put into numbers, but I think it would help. Then see how Seraphon players react in the next six months and react.

    And yes that would still make 10 Saurus a pretty useless unit, but we have that for other armies as well, for 100 point units (5 Liberators aren't that great either although still better than Saurus).
     
  3. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Mm, so basicly unless you have the smallest base size, or are ranged like skinks, horde bonusses don't work all that well simply due to space constraints once you go past 20 or so units... Meh, I'd say that alone should be reason enough to look at how the mechanic works for most units...

    A treshold of 15 and 20 would be better, but this'd still leave our summoning lacking with its max of 20 & I still feel it'd drop off too quickly (you'd still really only want to field units of 40 just to get the bufferwounds so they might actually survive a turn with the buff, 30 is only 10 wound buffer with a 5+ save, that's not amazing..) Personally I'd almost go for 5+ and 10+ given that they're supposed to get their bonus from organisation and not just from massed ranks. So even a handfull should get organised. Though especially the extra attack might need to be toned down in that case as that might be overpowered.

    As for a unit of 10 being useless. I'd like them to at least serve some purpose. They don't need to be "good", but for example a unit of 5 liberators still fullfills its purpose. All it's bonusses still work. Its still sturdy. 4 groups of 5 liberators are not magically worse than 1 group of 20 in the same way that 4 groups of 10 warriors don't even hold a candle to 1 of 40. Hell, arguably 4 groups of 5 liberators might even be better as they can go to different place and can't be locked into place by being charged in a flank as easily, plus extra captains with bonus attacks. 5 liberators might not win much on their own, but they function, 10 saurus warriors don't even function on their own. Similarly 10 skeletons at least have the tarpit thing going with the ressurecting models. They might not be good, but they're not virtually useless against a different unit of 100 points.

    Basicly, just make a unit of 10 actually decent line infantry like they're supposed to be. If I have 10 saurus warriors fighting 5 liberators I don't want the liberators to win 9 out of 10 times (without backup) cuz they just have vastly better raw stats nad their bonusses actually work in all (or at least most) situations..

    To be honest, that's another big issue they have, all of their effects are conditional. In contrast the liberator's special abilities only have 1 that's really conditional (lay down the tyrants) the rest just kicks in in the appropriate phase. Re-rolling saves of 1 happens regardless. You don't need x liberators, there's no counter, it doesn't only work against attacks of type x. It just happens. It's odd that the saurus warriors have that many abilities and nearly all of em can be countered or only proc under a specific condition.
     
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  4. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Just had an idea, what if horde buffs just went along the lines of "as long as there is at least x% of the initial unit left they have this buff"

    E.g. in the case of saurus warriors it'd be 50% and 75%, so if you'd start with a unit of 10 it'd be 5 and 7.5 models, with 20 it'd be 10 and 15 etc. This still encourages building a proper horde, as going from 10 to below 7.5 only requirs 3 wounds which can easily be done in a single fight by a "weak" opponent, whereas a proper horde unit has a buffer of 10 wounds. But it'd allow all unit sizes to actually function. Though the hard cutoff does remain an issue, at least this way you could build a tactic around it, some psychologcal tricks (that one unit of 10 looks deceptivly weak, so it might get ignored, Or maybe your opponent is really scared of the buff so he starts chipping away at 3 units of 10 ignoring the actual big bad threat you're sending) and stuff like a sunclaw starhost that wants to field multiple hordes would actually work.
     
  5. Aginor
    OldBlood

    Aginor Well-Known Member

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    I think I'd personally like it, but the percent math is a pain. The premise of AoS is a simple ruleset so I'd probably aim for something more intuitive.
    I like the comparison method better I think.
     
  6. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    I'd say that if you can't calculate 50% or 75% of a given number quickly without help you probably shouldn't be playing this game, provided the percentages aren't ridiculous it shouldn't really be complicated. Plus, you can Always just calculate the number when you make your army list and take a note with you... Just don't make it 67.132% or some such, but say only allow 4/5th, 3/4th, 2/3th 1/2th, 1/3th, 1/4th 1/5th as possible cutoff points those shouldn't be that difficult to caculate.

    Tbh, I like both methods. A fixed percentage fits more with an organised unit (they've trained, and for their tactic to work the unit needs to not have fallen apart) while just "we have more dudes" works best for sneaky backstabbing like the skaven do. The first could also be a tad more powerfull as it's easier to negate (decimate the unit) whereas the comparison can technicly be there forever if you have say clanrats versus a carnosaur.
     
  7. claymore36
    Skink

    claymore36 Member

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    In oldhammer saurus warriors were always a reliable heavy infantry unit. They're not going to decimate elite infantry but they can hold their own against the best of them until your stronger units could smash the enemy flank. I think that should be the strength of the saurus but unfortunately AoS doesn't seem to reflect that as well. My personal wish is for our shields to grant +1 to an armor save instead of negating rend, its useful in all such situations and isn't completely negated by higher rend weapons. That alone makes them more durable with mystic shield and summon starlight, turning them into a strong defensive battleline. The shield bonus would also benefit our knights and make 2+ guard possible outside of their battalion (and I think if that's the case the locking shield ability in the eternal starhost could perhaps be changed to give a 5+ defense against mortal wounds). From there changing their horde bonus to 10 and 20 would give the hordes more time in play before they lose steam and altogether it would make the unit a solid backbone for the rest of the army. At the end of the day their banner rarely does anything and large units are hard to maneuver so I feel like it wouldn't be game breaking and would make my beloved saurus feel like the elite warriors they were in the old days.
     
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  8. Aginor
    OldBlood

    Aginor Well-Known Member

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    Some good thoughts there. I think that would indeed bring more of the "Saurus spirit" into the rules.
     
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  9. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    How would that work with respect to our heroes with their fancier shields though? The sunblood just has +3 to all his saverolls now? :p

    I think that they should simply give them better baseline stats, make the shields reduce rend, as opposed to ignore rend on attacks with a specific amount of rend. And rethink how horde bonusses work in general. Preferably going to either a %-based system or just a system in which you compare your unit with the target. Also, stop less power in the horde bonusses.
     
  10. Aginor
    OldBlood

    Aginor Well-Known Member

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    I think the Sunblood should either halve incoming wounds and mortal wounds like the Wight King with Black Axe does or ignore rend completely and halve mortal wounds like a Bastiladon does.
    Similar for the Eternity Warden, and the Oldblood should get the same as the Warriors, maybe a bit more.

    The defensive options that can be applied to models are plenty if you look through warscrolls and abilities of armies. From the top of my head:
    - guaranteed 6+ save even if affected by rend
    - save after save
    - reroll saves of 1
    - reroll saves
    - ignore rend x
    - ignore all rend
    - reduce rend
    - halve mortal wounds on roll
    - halve all incoming wounds, rounding up
    - reduce enemy weapon damage characteristic
    - reduce enemy hit or wound rolls
    - transfer wounds to other unit
    - ignore wound that kills a model on roll
    - better base wounds
    - better base save
    - cause damage on enemies on successful save of x
    - cause damage on enemies on successful save reroll
    - battleshock immunity
    - improve battleshock
    - chance on fleeing model returning

    All of the above are in the game right now. There are some more, variants of the above ones that affect only melee or only ranged attacks for example, or combinations with terrain (like with Dryads or Chameleon Skinks).

    Most of them are useful in one or more ways, so if we want to improve defensive on any models IMO there is enough we/GW can do.
     
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  11. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    There's shields that improve battleshock? The hell kind of shields do that?
     
  12. Aginor
    OldBlood

    Aginor Well-Known Member

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    Nonono I was talking about defensive stats, not shields. Shields are just a minor aspect of that.

    EDIT: But now that I think about it: I can totally imagine a fluff text explaining how a mighty glowing magic shield could affect battleshock. :D
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2018
  13. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    To be honest that'd be the weirdest effect of a shield yet. Though I can imagine a unit with shiny shields inspiring the next unit to stay. Not the same unit though, that'd be weird.
     
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  14. Aginor
    OldBlood

    Aginor Well-Known Member

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    Yeah probably an effect that could work for a shiny SCE hero for example, inspiring his dudes with his mighty shiny Sigmar superbattlekillmortalkombatdeathhammergrimdarksolarflare-shield. :D
     
  15. Canas
    Carnasaur

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Nah, their shields already explode and give re-rolls, even GW finds that enough for the SCE.
     

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