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Tutorial Tactics for Seraphon - Troops

Discussion in 'Seraphon Tactics' started by Killer Angel, Feb 27, 2016.

  1. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Now that I think on it, Kroxigor works perfectly as defensive unit with Thunderquake Starhost, especially 6 or more of them.
    Keep an Astrolith bearer near them, make the EotG savage, and those guys will reroll all the rolls (to hit, to wound, and saves). Maximum carnage!
     
  2. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    I'm planning to give suggestions for a main Chamaleon Skinks force. It could be interesting...
     
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  3. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    CHAMALEON SKINKS


    Our 4 core troops (saurus warriors / guards / knights and skinks) can be the main force of an army. You can even pick a special troops as Kroxigor, and build an army around them.
    With chama skinks you cannot.
    Chamaleon are made to cover a support role. They appear from nowhere and shoot at the enemy, they weaken it, preparing the setting for our troops to clean the battlefield.
    Let’s see some way to employ chama:
    Assassins, using a squad that pops up and targets a wizard in the rearguard
    Redirectors, if they appear on the rear flank of an advancing unit: the enemy must choose to ignore it (and suffer ranged attacks) or chase it (losing a couple of turns)
    Bait, if they appear and shoot, luring the enemy to chase them, but you placed them within range of charge from saurus knights or a similar unit.
    It’s clear that they are useful, but they’re not doing the main work.
    So, is it possible to field an army based on them? I’d say yes… certainly an unusual army, but you can.
    Their peculiarity, is the ability to vanish and reappear, so this will be the style of such an army: catch me if you can… and in the meantime, you will shoot. Range 16” is really good, they can appear in pieces of terrains to gain cover’s bonuses, and shoot almost always without seriously risking a charge. You are not going to deliver huge amount of damage, but you will work on attrition, trying to survive in the meantime.

    Should I use a Formation?
    One of the problems with ambushes, is that chama skinks appear in the movement phase, so you won’t have many chances to buff’em during the hero phase… so you’ll need all the bonuses you can, and the Shadowstrike Starhost is mandatory: picking an enemy unit visible to the formation’s priest / starpriest, you can re-roll to hit and to wound rolls of 1.
    You can include up to 2 chama units in the formation, so you’ll do it.

    How many should I field?
    The minimum for a unit is 5. More than 10, and it could be a problem to field them all in an advantageous position and to exploit the big benefit of covers (big numbers are not friendly to skirmishers)
    I’d probably go for 7-8 for each unit. A unit of 8 chama, is going to deliver 16 attacks, hitting at 3+ and rerolling 1s.
    AND I would evaluate the possibility to use TWO Shadowstrike Starhosts, to have 4 buffed units of chama.
    Plus, the flying units will benefit from be hidden in the clouds, fitting perfectly the “you don’t see me” theme.

    What heroes are good for them?
    Slann Starmaster: he’s slow, and vulnerable, but it will give magic support and, most of all, he will be a great bait. Keep him away from the enemy, and they will try to chase him down… letting the chameleon do their job. The enemy will hopefully realize too late that the Slann isn’t the usual staple of the army. And in the meantime, he will cast spells…
    Oxyotl (see original battlescrolls): the perfect chameleon hero for this army. He can ambush and disappear from sight as normal chameleon, he’s got the same huge bonuses to save when in cover, and delivers lots of attacks (even if he doesn’t have the star-venom). But the real, great thing about our Stalker, is that he’s a skink hero, so he works as arcane vassal for our Slann. Oxyotl appears in the movement phase, in a secure place, and shoot; in your next turn, the Slann (which if far from the enemy), casts Arcane Bolt through Oxyotl, then summon another bunch of chama skinks, and buffs something with Spirit Shield. Then your arcane vassal vanishes, leaving the enemy with no target… (while the summoned chama skinks fire).
    Skink Chief (again, in the original battlescrolls): he’ll be the general, his command ability gives a +1 to hit to a Skink unit. You need to have a unit available during the hero phase, but with such an amount of chama units, you should have one that will benefit from the bonus and shoot. That lucky unit, will hit at 2+, rerolling 1s, and for each roll of 5+, will threaten to wound with the Star-venom. Not bad at all.
    Skink Priest / Starpriest: you’ll have 2 of ‘em, for the formations. The priest can give re-rolls to saves (for some chama in cover, a 3+ re-rollable is sweet), have a nice missile weapon with 18” range, and can fly at 14” (making him very difficult to hit). The Starpriest will give additional Mistic Shields / Arcane Bolts, or a further protection to a unit with Starlight. They’re both good, you can go 1 and 1.

    How about the rest of the army?
    Well, we already have no less than 30 chama skinks, at least 6 flyers, the Slann, Oxyotl, a couple of priests and a skink chief. You could give a warden to the Slann, to make him more durable, and can place some other shooter (razordons?)

    Can you tell me again the tactic?
    Pop and shoot, then vanish again. Don’t leave clear targets to your enemy. Use Ripperdactyls and concentrated fire to eliminate long range shooters that could hit your chama, then proceed to erode the rest of the troops. Exploits terrain and covers, buffs the units that could be at risk of charge, and vanish when you’re at risk. A buffed unit in cover could even resist a lucky charge, before fleeing.
    Flee with the Slann, you’ll have range to cast tnx to your vassals, if something comes too near, gain some time summoning some bad guy (razordons / sallies).
    Keep also in mind that, unless you’re playing with wounds, many game systems give victory points if the unit is killed in all its entirety. This will give you another dirty advantage: if a unit is reduced to 1 or 2 chama… well, let them vanish from sight, and don’t let them reappear: this way, you won’t concede points to your adversary!
    You’re probably going to win by killing a few models each time, being careful with deployment and ambushes. Certainly, your adversary won’t love this: it’s frustrating when your opponent plays “now you see me, and now you don’t”!. But hey, this is WAR! ;)
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016
  4. Rekmeister
    Skink

    Rekmeister Member

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    Great breakdown Killer Angel, but may I throw one crazy idea into the hat? One of the best heroes to use alongside the Charma Skinks is the Astrolith bearer. I know that's an obvious answer because it is great with anything BUT a standard battle line of Guard/Warriors/??? becomes that much more deadly when a peppering of re-rolling blowpipes are supporting them. The big bonus being that the usual space between Astrolith and battle line is often at least big enough for a handful of Charma Skink, and filling it with something just makes the bearer that bit more economic. The best bit is that the tanky nature of our troops means those consistent wounds from the Charma's won't be got rid of till you kill the army, which is already hard enough.
     
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  5. StealthKnightSteg
    Razordon

    StealthKnightSteg Well-Known Member

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    @Killer Angel How about the Troglodon as a more durable vassal?
     
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  6. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Well, if we're talking about the chamaleon skinks army, you need to avoid to be targeted.

    a skink priest with cloak, got only 4 wounds (bad), but he's small (good), has a move 14" fly (good), and a save at 4+ (good), and you already have him because of formation (good)

    a troglodon got 12 wounds (good), and save at 4+ (good), but it's large (bad), move 12" (not so good), and it's not included in the formation, so it's an "add on" (and falls in the cathegory "the rest of the army").
    The nice thing, is that it can draw some enemy's fire, leaving intact your precious chama skinks, and even if it dies, you'll still have the priests needed for the formations.
     
  7. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    So far, we have covered all the "core" troops (Warriors, Guards, Kinghts and Skinks), plus a couple of special ones (Kroxigor and Chama skinks).
    What are we still missing? of course, the:

    LUSTRIAN AIR FORCES
    We have 2 units: Terradons and Ripperdactyls.
    Rippers are better at straight up damage, as well as area control control with the toad. They are the quintessential glass cannon.
    Terradons are better to harass the enemy and targeting weak units, while someone else does the hard work.
    In the end, you can build an army around rippers, and probably around rippers and terradons, while terradons-only it's hard (they are a useful add-on).
    So:
    RIPPERS
    I'm not going to discuss how you should attack or use your rippers (it has been debated in different threads), I'm taking it for granted, so I'm going to focus on how you should build an army around them.
    Especially with toads, they can deliver so much attacks that they're going to shred any opponent will be on their way, so, with enough of them, you can effectively kill an army. You can use them as assassins, monster hunters, horde killers... the only thing they cannot do is to fight defensively.

    Should I use a Formation?
    They have the Shadowstrike Starhost. It gives them "hidden in the clouds" which is golden. At least one is mandatory (and you'll see really why in the next point).
    For the other units of the formation, pick at least one of basic skink unit.

    How many should I field?
    They work better with toads. Toads works also as battlefield control and negate areas. The more toads you place, the better.
    However, you can place the toads only in your first hero phase, so if you summon in the other turns a unit of rippers, you have to work with the toads already on the battlefield.
    So, you need to maximize the number of units at the beginning.
    The minimum for a unit is 3 rippers.
    If you don't have at least 6 rippers, avoid the idea.
    With two units of rippers, you can place 3 toads.
    (Wait, what? Killer Angel, i'm not sure I'm following you...)
    the trick is: you field the 3+3 rippres on the battlefield. Then you declare that the third unit is "hidden in the clouds" tnx to the formation. By rules, you don't have to field it, they're nowhere: You place them only when they attack. But 3 toads will be on the battlefield.
    You attack with your already placed rippers, when the first unit will die, you recycle them as the unit's formation, and swoop from the sky.
    The minimum number for such an army should be 2 units + 1 in the sky.
    Better if 3 +1 (or 4+1, or 4+2...)

    What heroes are good for them?
    Skink Priest / Starpriest: useful, but you'll have more 'cause it's included in the formation, rather than a real need.
    Slann Starmaster: no doubt here… you need constellations (you'll see why more in details later), and you need summons. Because yeah, you will attack with rippers every turn, the enemy will kill them, and you will summon them again. On the battlefield, you will have every turn your whole number of rippers models! to win, you must drown you enemy in a rain of vicious beaks
    Starseer: re-roll dices and curse of fate. you will need them, as explained in the tactic.
    Skink Chief (it's in the original battlescrolls): if you use him, he’ll be the general, his command ability gives a +1 to hit to a Skink unit. You need to have a unit available during the hero phase, and that's why many of your rippers are already on the battlefield.
    Eternity Warden: could help your Slann to stay alive. field him if you can, it's not mandatory.
    Olblood (on foot); an alternative to skink chief as general. You'll see why in the tactic.

    The tactic
    Toad will cover hot spots in the battlefield: put one near your first target, one or two between you and the enemy to redirect him (or upon objectives, if you play with them), and absolutely put a toad just in front of your Slann. Toads are a key to win, they move slowly, so you should try to cover as much terrain as you can.
    You'll do wave attacks with rippers, annihilating targets one by one. Use the ones hidden in the clouds to assassinate protected targets in the rearline. For "standard" combat, when you throw your rippers at a horde / monsters / a couple of near targets, buff the heck out of the attacking unit: with Skink Chief you will hit at 3+ and wound at 3+, re-rolling. On a re-roll to hit of 2, use Curse of fate.
    The Slann will stay in the rearlines, at 1" from the toad, casting summons to replenish the rippers that will be surely killed by retaliation (remember, they're glass cannons), and so on.
    Use the skinks unit to form a wall around you Slann: he won't be engaged in CC, and attacking units will stop against the skinks. In your turn, you'll have the toad and a unit of ripper will charge furiously who dared to come near your precious Slann.
    If enemies are too much numerous, don't fear to sacrifice a ripper unit as chaff, in the following turn you will summon the killed ones.
    At a certain point, you'll need to summon rippers and have them immediately in combat. This is tricky, summoned rippers are placed at 9" distance from the enemy, and they cannot move in the movement hase. However, they can charge... but rolling 9 is not so immediate, how can we improve our chances? Well, you summon them in the hero phase, so they are eligible targets for spells and general abilities. With the constellation Hunter's steed, you have a +1 on charge (rippers reroll by themselves, you don't need the Great Drake), and with curse of fate, you could have another +1: you only need to roll a 7, and probably you can re-roll tnx to Cosmic Herald. This is sufficiently reliable.
    It could be better: the oldblood's command ability, lets you re-arrange models of a unit: one will stand still, but the other ones can move up to 3"... your summoned ripper at 9" from the enemy, are now at 6", and with the other bonuses, already listed, you only need to roll a 4; and after the succesful charge, the one that will start a little behind can pile in. You won't have the +1 granted by the skink chief, but you summon and charge, summon and charge...
     
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  8. Bowser
    Slann

    Bowser Third Spawning

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    Your three toad game is brilliant! I had never thought about that before. And your oldblood rearranging trick just made me rethink every summoning tactic I have ever had. You truly are a master of board control.
     
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  9. Nielspeterdejong
    Terradon

    Nielspeterdejong Well-Known Member

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    Question about the starpriest: Won't his serpent staff only allow the Kroxigor to do double damage on a roll of 6? And not a 5 and 6?
     
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  10. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Yes, but Curse of Fate from a Starseer will turn a 5 into a 6. ;)
     
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  11. Nielspeterdejong
    Terradon

    Nielspeterdejong Well-Known Member

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    Alright :) But that is only for 1 dice right? Is star seer worth picking over Skink priest, Tehenhuauin, or starpriest?
     
  12. Nielspeterdejong
    Terradon

    Nielspeterdejong Well-Known Member

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    Oh, and for the priest, what is better: feather cloak or priestly trappings?

    Also, I bought a ripper set but the toad was not included :C For competerive, can I use a similar size different toad miniature?
     
  13. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Yep, only one dice. but given that the +1/-1 can be used in each phase, you'll use it also for running and saves in shooting phase...
    The Starseer is Amazing. It's basically the poor man's Slann: can give you rerolls and the usual magical support... and Curse of Fate is invaluable. I always field him, a Slann, or both.


    Strange that the toad was not included. Mine was...

    For the priest, it depends: in a defensive tactic (castle of kroak + eternal starhost, or Thunderquake) a bubble of save rerolls is better, but i usually use the feather cloak: i can always buff the saves of a single unit, and i frankly favor the additional movement / improved save.
     
  14. Nielspeterdejong
    Terradon

    Nielspeterdejong Well-Known Member

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    Alright thanks!

    I bought the priest model, but it's the old tin model with the big staff. Can I choose (in competetive game) to play him either as a priestly robes, or as a feather cloak?

    And say I have 2 slanns and a starseer, and I can deploy 1. Would it make sence to take a slann and a starseer and not two slanns?
     
  15. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Regarding the priest, i think that even the most obsessed WYSIWYG won't have a problem with it.

    Regarding the Slann / Starseer, if you play with points and rule of one, to use 2 slanns would be counterproductive, and anyway in most cases it's better to use two different casters.
     
  16. Nielspeterdejong
    Terradon

    Nielspeterdejong Well-Known Member

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    Alright, thanks! About the Slann starseer, he can cast 1 spell per turn right? Is it always better to use curse of ages? Even if you only add 1 to a single dice?
     
  17. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Curse of fate is a huge spell. It's not that it adds a +1 to a single dce... it does it in each phase.
    You cast it on an Engine of the Gods?
    +1/-1 for the engine in the hero phase. Another one in the shooting phase. Another one in close combat. It lasts 'til your next hero phase, so it will work also in the enemy's turn: bunus to save if targeted by shooting, then in combat.

    It's incredibly useful for many units.
    Knights? bonus to run, bonus to charge, double damage on combat.
    another caster? bonus to cast, to dispel to saves...
    Razordons? +1 for stand and shoot.
    Salamanders? increase your chances to burn!

    And of course, it's also useful against enemies that count on nat. 6 to hurt you.
     
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  18. Nielspeterdejong
    Terradon

    Nielspeterdejong Well-Known Member

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    So each phase you can pick one of your units (same one, or a different one) and you can add +1/-1 on one roll for one unit?

    Does that mean that in each phase of the enemy I can add -1/+1 on one roll of one enemy unit as well?

    As for the knights, did you mean that they'd be more likely to get the 6 rolls with it (for double damage)?
     
  19. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    The target of the spell is just ONE unit (yours, or your opponent's). 'til you next hero phase, you can apply a +1 or -1 to a single roll made by that unit, in each phase.

    If you have other specific questions, PM me, 'cause we're going decisely OT. ;)
     
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  20. Tokek
    Saurus

    Tokek Active Member

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    Forgive any beginner mistakes here but I was thinking of taking the Knights in a Bloodclaw Starhost for all those heroes each getting their command benefit. It seems to me that it changes round a few things

    Formation benefits

    An additional Powerful Jaws and Shield attack is not really that big a deal - it is the weakest of their attacks. Even so it brings them up to a base 5 attacks per model.

    The real benefits come from the overlapping command abilities.

    What heroes are good for them?
    This seems to fall apart if the Oldblood dies so I am going to be taking him on a Carnosaur for durability - that makes the other heroes better beatsticks but does not directly benefit the Knights. Also he can keep up.

    The obvious hero to go with knights is the Scar Veteran on Cold One. He can keep up with them, is a decent combat threat and gives them re-rolls to charge and on 1's to hit. He also gives the Cold Ones an additional bite attack which is nice because that is a decent attack. With the number of heroes needed i would be tempted to take two of these so that a unit going in will have 4 Cold One bites, 2 Powerful Jaws bites and a Spear. It is a lot of attacks per model and immediately makes me want a Skink Starpriest (see below).

    A Sunblood is the other option that really helps them - re-rolling hits should really stack up when each model is making 7 attacks. With the Scar Veterans helping him get into combat and the extra attacks from the Oldblood the Sunblood himself looks quite tasty in combat too. The Sunblood might get left behind if I need to march across the table, I will see how this works out in practice.

    Then I would want the Skink Starpriest. If I am making 6 Jaws/Bites attack per model then the Serpent Staff looks like it will add a substantial number of wounds and his spell will help the rather fragile knights get where they are going. Like all the skinks he is quick enough to keep up.

    As the rather off-beat fluff for my project requires Order allegiance I will then be adding in a Battlemage. The Amber mage helps fix the relative weakness of this formation in producing Mortal wounds against targets that are not so vulnerable to just massed non-rending hits. I really love the flexibility of choosing the spell when you set up the Battlemage and some human "sages" are needed for my army theme so that is perfect.

    So have I misunderstood how this all works - or is it going to fail for some reason I cannot see yet (being new to AoS)?
     
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