Squatting in the bushes

Hi folks,

Back once again for more drivel, and why not? Today I’ll be taking a look at what I might take in my crew for squatter’s rights at Halifaux (the tournament I’m going to next weekend). Squatter’s rights seems to be a strategy which pops up a fair bit on tabletops near me, so I’ve played it a few times. It seems to be a strategy where most of the time, both players will get full VPs for the strategy, so it comes down to schemes a lot of the time (which, unfortunately, I won’t know until I’m at the event). However, this poses an interesting prospect. If you can successfully stop your opponent from scoring 1 or even 2 VPs on the strategy, you have quite a big advantage. So let’s take a look at how I might set myself up for this one.

As with Reckoning, it’s 50ss, and the crew comes with a “scheme availability might change things” disclaimer. Also as with Reckoning, feedback is welcome and indeed encouraged. Nothing is set in stone until the game starts.

Just as a mini update. I tried out the reckoning crew against Lilith… it got flattened. I think there’s not enough raw damage output, and the defense is too dependent on Myranda still being alive in it (didn’t help that I forgot she can use soulstones), as people suggested. On the plus side though, Marcus with feral and howl and domesticate can really shut down models. Miss step is pretty badass but goes down quickly to other beatsticks. The canine remains’ speed really impressed me. For a Marcus crew, I think I need to capitalise on speed and alpha striking to punch out the threats as quickly as possible. I may add a Cerberus and go with good old trail of the gods on Marcus to help bring the pain. I sorely missed arcane reservoir too.

Anyway, back to the main topic of the post, the squatter’s rights crew:

Marcus
Of course I’m still using the big man. Interestingly, I think Marcus, Ramos, and Mei could all do pretty well in Squatter’s rights by totally different methods (I don’t know enough about Raspy to comment), so hopefully Arcanists should give a good showing here. Marcus will be using Trail of the Gods this time round. This is largely for the +3 walk ability, as it basically means the opponent can never leave a marker unguarded. If markers are guarded, Marcus has the raw badassery to give most models a good thrashing. He may need assistance on Masters, henchmen, or big enforcers, but can bring most minions down pretty quickly with +2 damage and/or an extra AP for melee, and even larger models need to watch out. I’m not totally sure on the rest of the Marcus setup (he doesn’t really NEED anything else), but it may well be arcane reservoir (extra card in your hand is very useful), and possibly imbued energies to get fast for a turn.
Generally, Marcus will be loitering around, being a constant threat for dropping markers, flipping markers, and bashing enemies (full penknife mode). This does leave him slightly squishy, but if a situation is too dangerous, he’ll use his +3 walk and “defend me” to avoid it… hopefully.

Jackalope
If make them suffer is available the Jackalope might not be in the crew (as it’s easy points), but chances are it’ll be present. This is for the simple reason that the jackalope is fantastic for Squatter’s rights. Everything the jackalope does is to irritate. It can tie up models in melee so they can’t interact, and has high enough defense that it might take a good card, or a few AP to kill off. Then it just keeps on popping back up to prevent models interacting. Every now and then it even kills something too. It’s also a very handy cheap activation which I just don’t care about. Indeed it could be 2 activations (activate, die, friendly beast dies, jackalope pops up and can activate again!). The key point though, is the lack of caring. I’ll throw the rabbit at anything to sap a few AP, and try to distract the opponent (note: not ‘distract’ as in the scheme). Man, I love that rodent.

Myranda
After the Myranda post, I couldn’t not take her could I? As ever, she’ll have imbued energies, keeping her fairly cheap. She has a special role in squatter’s rights though. She can hand out odd attacks here and there (via her hunting call spell) which often weaken “blocking” enemy models enough that a model which is challenging a squat marker can finish them off with an AP and then interact with their second AP. I know it sounds like a big theoryfaux lie, but it does seem to work fairly well.
She can also heal up “blocking” models to make them able to stop interactions that bit longer. Then she’ll probably turn into a Cerberus or RSR as the situation dictates.

From this point on, the plan gets a little wooly, as I think most of the beasts have good roles to play in Squatter’s rights. I’m tempted to put in Cojo, but I fear he’s too slow to stick to the vague plan. “What is that vague plan?” I hear you ask. Well the clue is in the blog title.

Miss Step
Now bear with me (and yes, I believe it is “bear” rather than “bare”), I’m not just addicted to my brand new shiny. There’s a logic here. First off, if Marcus is going to be trotting around, I need something big and threatening enough to take the attention off him. Second, the vague plan needs a strong push up one side, and Miss Step is good for strength and pushing. Third, and possibly most importantly, Miss Step has 3 AP. OK, one of them can only be used for walk actions, but that’s not a bad thing. It means she’s very flexible in the strategy. She can flip 2 markers in a turn. Indeed with Alpha, she can kill stuff and then flip 2 markers, all within 1 turn.
Basically, she’s speedy, killy, distracting, and strategic. Also hopefully people won’t have as many focussed killer models in this strategy as in Reckoning.
That being said, she’s very expensive, and I suspect a Cerberus might well be a better choice, as leap makes it extremely flexible along the line of markers (it can leap out, and charge in elsewhere if need be).

Canine Remains
For beastifying Miss Step, but also a very fast, fairly resilient, cheap activation. Useful for waddling about in the background paring up with a moleman to get a ton of scheme markers around the place.

Moleman
More of the same, cheap, resilient, quick, activation.

RSR
Pretty much designed for tying up models in strategies like this. Slither allows it to move amongst the markers, even when the fighting hots up. Good defense and terrifying mean it’ll take some effort to bring down. I’m not particularly expecting RSR to kill much, or even achieve that much. It’s purely there to block markers from enemy models, and lock up models around the centre, leaving Marcus and Miss Step/cerberus more free to move around and do what they need to.

Waldgeist
This is on the blocking team too. With a 4″ melee range, good armour, and its forest summoning abilities, the waldgeist is well designed to block some markers, and help block up firing lines. Also between RSR and the Waldgeist, they should be able to hand out bits of damage.

Silurid
Silurids are very good at squatter’s rights as they can leap without needing a mask in their cast, making them very fast and manouverable. Unfortunately, silurids are very squishy, and will die if someone with a ranged attack gets line of sight to them, so this will depend on what faction I’m playing against.

So the list will look vaguely like:
Marcus – trail, arcane reservoir, something else
Jackalope
Myranda – imbued energies
Miss Step/ Cerberus
RSR
Canine
Moleman
Silurid/waldgeist

As I said, lots of the beasts are very useful for squatter’s rights, so it feels like nothing is a bad choice. The basic plan is to play it like beat down. Less enemy models = more control of the game. I’ll kill stuff and let the less killy models deal with all that objective rubbish. Preferable schemes for this would be ones which are scored in 1 turn, so that I can focus on the strategy (and denying my opponent VPs) and then once I’ve killed everything, can grab something like entourage. I’m not too fussed to be honest, this is one of my favourite strategies as there’s always lots to see and do, so I’ll just sit back and enjoy it.

Thoughts and opinions would be welcome (on here, twitter (iamsssk) or somewhere on the wyrd forum).

I might have a competition for a good sign off phrase. As with the naming of the blog, the prize would be getting a mention in a post, and the knowledge that you’re at least marginally more whitty than some other people… in my opinion… at the time. More on that in the future.

Dave/sssk

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