Podcast 156 – Battle Engines, Banes, and Pointy-Eared Genocidal Maniacs!

Darrell, Nick and I sat down to talk about the current state of affairs for battle engines (hint: is good), Banes (hint: is better than it was), and Retribution (hint: Nick needs clean shorts).

Give it a listen, let us know what you think! We’re going to try and get a batrep in for next week, but for this week… well, I think you’ll enjoy it!

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6 thoughts on “Podcast 156 – Battle Engines, Banes, and Pointy-Eared Genocidal Maniacs!

  1. I hate to be that guy but, since Kassem’s evidently not doing his job, Morghoul 3 also got dropped when Ret rules appeared. Poke.

    As for the Meat Thresher vs Siege Animantarax point cost debate, the Thresher won’t ever kill a heavy itself. It’s only got the one great attack plus some pow14 shooting. The SA can do a pow 15 impact, an 18 charge and up to 3 more pow 18’s (with crit smite if that’s what you want) and pow 15 guns. Plus pow 11’s just in case. Even with all that though, I still think it needs an ability to generate it’s own cantankerous tokens. A star action seems like a great tradeoff. The issue with using the PGBHs is that they’re never in the right position to load the Animantarax up and still effect beasts next turn. And giving him his own unit makes him by far the most expensive battle engine by far. He’s still good, and the increase in boxes is huge for him, but to really be top flight, he needs a way to generate his own.

    • I appreciate you being that guy.

      I’ve never had trouble loading the Animantrax up on turn 1, it just takes some finicky positioning:

      Position 1-2 Paingivers at the front of your deployment zone so the Animantrax will barely miss them when it runs forward. You can get a full 10″ run, and still get 2 Paingivers base to base and 3 more within 2 inches. They can all be on the same side, and end up a couple inches behind your beasts where they can basically be good to go on turn 2.

      @Marx: I suspect the Animantrax just isn’t what you’re looking for in a battle engine. If it had a ranged boosting mechanic, it would be criminally undercosted – and would outperform the Cannoneer in virtually every way. Currently, its only weakness is that it dies too fast at 24 boxes. At 35, it seems like it’ll be well worth 18pts. I do wish the guy with the horn in the back did something though (like War Cry maybe :3c).

    • Ah! Thanks for the catch. Kassem has been busy with “real life” (whatever that is) and so we missed the M3 release. We’ll talk about him this week!

      As for the Meat Thresher vs the Animantrax (both you and Glasskin commented on), I think you’re right. I just have issues with any huge-based melee model. I have similar problems with the Desert Hydra (which, thankfully, has vastly improved). It’s relatively easy to deny a landing zone, and you’re almost always piece-trading poorly as a result.

      ALMOST. It’s very possible that the MT, SA, and Machine Wraith now might actually earn their points before being shot off the table… but I’ll have to wait to see.

      Either way, thanks to both of you for the feedback!

      • Maybe this will at least help you see where I’m coming from:

        The SA, in its current form, is a skirmishing model, not a melee model. It stays on the flanks, using its 12″ gun and 3″ reposition to help clear its own flank, and lend fire support to the center of the table, while keeping safely out of opposing charge ranges. It can generally handle the amount of shooting it’s likely to receive out on a flank without help. It will commit to melee either on the turn the rest of the Skorne heavies do, or just afterward. The SA’s melee power is definitely where most of its value comes from. It hits like a fully functional heavy in melee, and it out-threats most heavies. You should be looking to either finish a piece trade with the SA, or hit the opponent’s flank as part of a large-scale alpha.

        So it initially gallops around shooting (Trample is a 3″ move buff for this and nothing more), then charges into melee when the lines cross, where it hits like an extra heavy. It can go back to running around and shooting very easily if it survives. It’s a huge based skirmisher with a silly grin on its silly turtle face.

        As for a ranged boosting mechanic, how many points would you spend on the SA if it were a warjack? That’s essentially what you’d be getting. A huge based warjack with Arm 19, 35 hit boxes, Spd 8, Reposition 3, a P+S 18 melee weapon, and a Pow 13 Rng 12 RoF d3+1 gun with Volume Fire. It doesn’t get battlegroup benefits or focus from your ‘caster, but it gets “focus” when it takes damage (and you can damage it for focus and repair it easily). It also has the Cavalry rules (with a Pow 15 mount), charges for free, and has Dual Attack. That’s what I mean when I say criminally undercosted at 18pts. If the SA could boost with its guns it wouldn’t just see more table time, it’d see more table time than virtually any of our warbeasts.

        • I agree with the Skirmishing assessment. Of particular note is that volume fire makes it very deadly to cavalry models, rat 7 pow 15, so it keeps them backed off rather well. Still unsure about the PGBH though. If I go first I want to run full bore up the field to gain board position, I can’t do that and have Handlers along for the ride. Especially since my most common usage of Derpy is running a flank for Xerxis2.

          Also, I hope they take a look at our theme force as it relates to the SA. He’s allowed in it, but neither contributes points toward free models nor gains any benefit. I’d love for him to gain Swift Hunter like my beasts. I’d paint little lightning bolts and flames on his sides.

          • That makes sense if X2 is your main turtle runner. I usually take it with Hexeris 2 for Black Spot shenanigans, and he doesn’t mind it going 10″ on turn 1.

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