Man, the last week has been insane with real life issues and work overload, so this has been delayed a bit, but last weekend we got together to play some games and watch the WTC live streams. I ended up playing three games, with three different lists.
- Cain2 vs. Zaal1 (assassination win)
- Haley2 vs. Vlad3 (assassination loss)
- Haley2 vs. Vlad3 (assassination win)
Much beer was had, much hangover followed, and good times were had by all … well expect the Zaal player maybe. Cain2 shot him dead in a forest through four transfers, when Zaal had to get in there because of the kill box.
Cain2 continues to impress me, winning with all kinds of crazy lists. I still haven’t found ‘the one’ list, but having gone 6-0 so far means there’s no real rush to create perfection. Next up on the test-train are Arcane Tempest Riflemen, Defenders, and the return of Aiyana & Holt.
– Jonas Murdoch
This list has three heavies, which I have come to believe is quite essential to playing Cain2. They are not the heaviest of hitters at PS 17, but with access to both Kiss and Dark Shroud they can do some real damage. Cain is going to hate assigning that 1 focus to a Defender each turn, but that’s only really vital against high defense targets anyway, and he still has the vital focus available.
- Gate Crasher (2)
- Upkeep Heightened Reflexes (1)
- Upkeep Bullet Dodger (1)
The list doesn’t really have a great FFE target anyway (AT Riflemen, Strangeways, and Holt are situational targets), so assigning one focus to a Defender still leaves Cain with the crucial ‘don’t drift an AoE on me and spike me to death‘ focus point. To this day Cain has dodged everything thrown at him, but that luck won’t hold forever, even with DEF 19+ and immunity to KD, so keeping him safe is a priority.
This does mean that Cain won’t be boosting damage on his shots unless he’s going to be safe on the following round without Gate Crasher, but in a surprising number of games the sheer destructive force of Cain has meant he could simply kill what would otherwise have threatened him the following turn, and just use terrain + a heavy to block for him.
Haley2 has been giving me fits though. I just can’t create something I really like, despite Haley2 being really awesome with almost everything. My newest idea is trying to abuse Deflection to create DEF 18 Nyss Hunters with Murdoch/Rhupert, using Arcane Shield to protect them from blast damage, and using the mini-feat on a crucial turn to be DEF 20 and immune to blast damage. Theoretically they can run in turn one, and be DEF 18 / ARM 14 on the first turn, then be DEF 20 / Immune to blast damage on the second turn, while I move Arcane Shield to a heavy.
What I really need for Haley2 is a heavy version of the Charger. I’ve been making builds with both Chargers and Ironclads, to give me RNG 12+ accurate shots in combination with acceptable melee power, but it’s not really doing it for me. I’ve tried Thunderhead & Dynamo, which have everything I want EXCEPT they’re RNG 10 and that’s often not enough to buy me a turn of shooting before I need to use the feat. I’ve also been looking at the Cyclones, but POW 14 is just too low to really be what I’m looking for.
The next list will try out Defenders, but I’m unsure it’s what I’m looking for. I really want a shitload of boostable RNG 12+ / POW 12+ to clear out cavalry and heavy infantry, combined with POW 17+ melee to deal with heavies. Thunderhead was actually doing a great job, but he needs to be on Jakes (Energizer backwards for 12″ effective range), and a Firefly (to emulate boosted damage), and then he’s quite expensive (like three chargers expensive). Reliants are much too expensive to spam as well, so here’s to hoping that new jack we’ve seen art for is what I’m looking for.
I’ve been considering going all out on Chargers, and simply overloading the enemy, but it’s vulnerable to extreme ARM skews, which seems to be all the rage these days anyway, and also vulnerable to things like stealth/incorporeal/cloud defenses. The hunt continues to find the perfect Haley2 list… well also on the perfect Cain2 list, but that part seems to be less important because he just wins the games anyway even if I let him down.