Donnerstag, 17. April 2014

Khador 2014 Part 05 - 9 point 'Jacks

(Yes, that's a - very bad - 9" Nails pun)

   I guess it was once again the Grolar that made me do it, since it's nine points. It, however, also has to do with my first ever Harkevich Victory, and the Destroyer featured in the list, which, mainly merely was there since I had no other 9pt warjack at home. I'm always considering to swap him, but what for? It's not like he has nothing to offer, and thinking about what he offers is exactly what brought me to write this article.

So today's topic are the nine point options Khador has, and what each of those bring to the table/a list, also preferred 'Casters for those choices (if any). Let's do this! We'll likely find out why some of them are very much maligned, and maybe some spark of hope, too.
I think it's best if we start with the Warjacks (in alphabetical order) first, and look at infantry options (well, those which cost exactly 9 points in full modules) later.

Decimator - armed with a Pow 15, RoF 2, Rng 10" Beat Back gun and a P&S 18 Sustained Attack Ripsaw, this 'Jack finds himself in an odd (as in: bad) spot - almost right in the middle of the other 'Jacks. The Demolisher has as much Pow and shots with his guns (and AoEs that matter), the Grolar now has as much hitting power and hitting reliability. It's not totally surprising that the Decimator was released with Mk II, at a time where PP appears to have been very reluctant regarding the strength of new releases (after Legends...), and hadn't found their current great groove yet.
   What does he bring? I can't really say, since I don't own one, which biases my judgement even further. People claim he's a really good 'Jack to bring with Malakov - and while I agree, why not bring one of the others, then? The few things that do stand out about him are 10" range (which is only outdone by the Destroyer), the ability to fire it's high Pow gun without compromising his armour, and Beat Back on said gun. As said, the appearance of a auto-kd P&S 18 hammer just took all the shine there was to the Ripsaw. I do have a feeling, though, that the Decimators time is yet to come (because that's how PP rolls).
Demolisher - A wrath release (and roughly since Colossals, we also have a model), this is one of the Clamjacks - thusly it comes with ARM 25 and Bulldoze. The weapons loadout is quite different from it's sibling, the Devastator - two Pow 15 Rng 8" AoE 4" guns with Gunfighter are nothing to sneeze at. Melee-wise it brings P&S 16 Shield Fists, which are kinda unimpressive. This 'Jack is about the armour first, and the guns loadout second, that's what it brings - two boostable pieplates to shred infantry with (and, if you're not good at positioning, losing him next turn). The Demolisher also has Girded, which, while mainly there to prevent him damaging himself, also allows neat combinations with other fragile models (like Eliminators, or the Ragman). The Demolisher loves Harkevich since Broadsides can make it fire before it activates, allowing it to close up again when activating.
Destroyer - He's the classic one, the grumpy old man. I also feel that a number of players are disgruntled with him since he's not as good as he was in the field test (where he had AoE 4" and P&S 18). He has his Pow 14, Rng 14" Arcing Fire Bombard (with AoE 3"), and a P&S 17 Axe with a neglegible Crit (unless you're critically hitting a Colossal. That happens very rarely. The big thing about the Destroyer, which no other 9-pointer brings, is a very long range, and arcing fire. In a Harkevich list, one of these coupled with Ivan keeps the assassination threat surprisingly alive.
Devastator - He's the first Clamjack we ever had, and, like the Demolisher he has ARM 25, Bulldoze, and P&S 16 Shield Fists. Both Clamjacks got a boost when it was ruled that Slamming/Trampling would no longer open them up, so they bring a very reliable (and hard to break) presence to the board, but the Devastator also comes with Rain of Death, which does a Pow 18 to everyone base to base with it, and a Pow 9 to everyone within 3". That's the biggest template currently available on the Khadoran market (and second to only the Thunderhead). With the advent of Colossals, though, he has fallen out of favour for the time being.
Grolar - the combo breaker among the De-squad. ;) I've talked enough about the Grolar in the past, but to reiterate the most important things: RoF5 Double Strike Blunderbuss, Open Fist, P&S 18 Ram Hammer, Fleet, Pathfinder, Gunfighter, Virtuoso. Oh yeah. It's got so many special rules tacked to it, it's almost not funny. If it weren't for the... uhm... specialness of the gun, this 'Jack could've easily outclassed all the others in it's points bracket. As determined in previous installments, most 'Caster will really like this 'Jack and make it work hard. Malakov is, again, a prime consideration.

Now, onto the Infantry modules in the same category (those that don't require fiddling with WA's to go to 9 pts):

Greylord Outriders (max) - These guys were really underrated before they released - turns out they're probably the second best light cavalry unit in Warmachine, and among the top four in the whole game. They come with Light Cavalry movement, 8" magical sprays, and respectable stats. Many 'Casters have ways to help them, and if they do, Outriders will just shred stuff - unless it's a single, heavy target.
MoW Shocktroopers (max) - A prime classic, and among the (if not THE) worst heavy infantry in the game. Which is sad. They got a little more prominent with the release of the Iron Fang Kovnik and his Shield March ability, and they still get to ARM 21, but for real (or rather, easy) competitiveness, they'll need something more, still. Irusk2, though, is your man - he does the absolute most for them.

MoW Demolition Corps (max) - DemoCorps, while also very maligned (and in gut-theory outshone by the Great Bears), have in-built abilities that make them self sufficient. With Ice Breaker, they can be Weapon Masters, and with Back Swing, they can have as many attacks as full unit of small based models. It's too bad that their defensive stats don't really hold up to a lot of pressure - but thankfully, there's Strakhov, who a) has Occultation to help, and b) loves him some medium bases that can't be trampled (this obviously goes for Shocktroopers, too).

There you have it, I'm sorry if this wasn't one of my better, in-depht articles, but I've wanted to to the comparison for a few days now, and it'll be long before I will be able to get in another game, I think.
'Till next time, farewell!