Caine3, Brickhouse, and themes

When Caine3 was spoiled just a short time ago I had people start texting me, and the first two messages were as follows.

  1. Caine3 looks like shit!
  2. That Caine3 looks brutal!

The Cygnar forums seem to like him, but to me he looks like a bunch of REALLY lovely abilities that just can’t come together and form something I see working. Ranged synergy feat is amazing, Witch Mark and Calamity is amazing, Mage Sight is amazing, but it’s strapped to the three most squishy models they could possibly find, without enough focus to really make it work.

I mean Caine3 looks like a very strong assassination caster with the right build, but if that option is out of the question he seems lost. He can try and shoot a bunch of enemy models of the board but without focus to fuel his battle group damage rolls the +3/+3 just means they hit better. He can use Calamity of course, but either he’s bringing an Arc Node (and with only 20 WJ points he’s already behind on points), or he’s way to close to the action and will die to whatever survives.

The little troupe of models can’t do any work before the feat round, because losing just one of them is a catastrophe for the feat turn, so his entire game plan hangs on one turn and that just instantly irks me, because if you happen to not be a much better player than your opponent those all decisive feat turns can be hard to come by. If he needs Mage Sight and Calamity he’ll need to be really safe to try it, and if he plays the back line game he’s just playing with 6-10 points less than his opponent.

Now I’m not saying he’s unplayable, but he looks exactly like what Caine2 turned into, which is a caster that has fantastic abilities that he can’t really use because he lacks the resources to¬† make the package fit. If Cygnar suddenly receives a FA: 2 model with the ability to use Empower his stock would skyrocket with me, but until that day – which I guess is never – I’m placing him firmly in the ‘just not going to work’ category.


Colour me unimpressed here, though I think he will find a home in a few lists. Brickhouse is a shitty Centurion with the ability to lock down models, and gains retaliatory strike with Maddox. I can see him showing up in heavy armor lists, because he’s a 2nd or 3rd heavy that is all but impossible to shoot on his way across the board, but his low threat range and poor survivability in melee means he’s unlikely to dethrone any of our stable jacks.

I think Stryker1 might enjoy him, as the feat and Arcane Shield has spectacular synergy with his ability to hold models in place, but the threat range of that move is less than most enemy jacks threaten, so pulling it off seems tricky. He’s not currently on my wish list, but I’m prepared to accept that he has potential with the right builds, and particularly Nemo2 might REALLY like him with Polarity Shield which turns him into a GREAT Centurion instead of a poor one.


The Gun Mage theme is laughably weak, to the point of asking why they even bothered. Until some spectacular new release makes it work it’s a complete dud, with basically no saving grace so far. The Heavy Metal theme force I can see with Darius, Kraye, and maybe even a few others, so there’s that to enjoy I guess. With the changes to Colossals Darius might even be heading to a place where he’ll be taken seriously as a tournament caster, but I’m not willing to sign off on that just yet.


I was really hoping this release would ignite my desire to play this game, but messy and boring are the two words I feel describe it best. I don’t quite know what to do now, but faction jumping isn’t as unthinkable as it used to be. I have enough factions to keep jumping for a while, with a solid core of painted Legion and Circle, and a crapton of mercenaries that could easily be turned into something playable.


Tagged as: , , , ,

8 Responses »

  1. I don’t think you’ll have a very hard time saving your guys for the feat. Caine can end up 14” from whatever he attacked, and the other guys can start 18” or 24” away from whatever they attack. That makes it awfully hard to kill them before the feat turn, and of course he’s feating early because it’s a pure gun feat.

    Also, chargers are shooting 2 fully boosted rat 9 pow 15s (or rat 11 pow 17 with calamity) and need just one focus to do it. Kind of nuts.

    • Well here’s to hoping I’m wrong! I’m really liking the core of the Nemo2 list I’m building with Brickhouse though, so until I’m proven wrong that’ll be my ray of sunlight :D

  2. I’m not sure what to think of caine3 yet. But I am disappointed that brickhouse is bent as all sin and now I might have to buy and expensive and awful looking model.

    Why is the brick bent? 2″ reach, force hold, carapace, add any armour buff/control element. Just run him to the 2″ engagement point of an enemy heavy that only has 1″ reach and you have just removed that model from the game. If you get charged you can always walk back to this magical force hold point, protected by carapace vs the freestrike and repeat.

    I think force hold will be errated at some point to say cannot advance except directly towards this model. At the moment it is just bonkers. Think Haley2, TK / Feat for additional lockdown or Kraye with the 5″ repo to trample him up and threatlock anything with 14″ pursuit and bullet dodger could also make him all the more annoying.

  3. Kara Sloan with heavy metal theme is quite brutal.

    – Squire (free)
    – Hurricane
    – 5 x hunters
    Arlan (free)
    Junior (free)
    – Charger
    Ailan Runewood (free)

    The list seems to solve a lot of existing problems of the current Kara list, say infantry removing (hurricane’s 4” template), scenario (more solos), pf (runewood), hard to deal with cover (hurricane’s kd) and tank (arm 22 hurricane).

  4. Couple of thoughts.

    Caine3 looks… very interesting if you like killing opposing casters, but not much else. I think the solution to your focus concern is Hunters, lots and lots of hunters. The love synergy, love calamity and only need one focus, since they can be effective Rat 10 while on the move (Rat 12 on the calamity target). Between 2x shadowfire from Ryan, removing tough from odd-ball models with Watts, you can reasonably top of 2 a lot of casters. I’m starting to see why so many shield guards are popping up in Themes. (Can you imagine taking him into the Ret theme or Madrak? shudder) The hunters always impress me with Sloan, but Caine3 loves them even more.
    I’m on board with everything else, very meh. I could see Striker 1 using the heavy metal theme. My build runs both Junior and Jakes1 to help him with focus efficiency. Course I also have a squad of lances/laddermore/ragman in that list, so it’s certainly not without cost, but there could be something there. Gaining repo on Jakes would actually help her not die so much and he really likes taking the slow jacks up-field. Might not be awful, I’d just replace the lance package with a Stormwall or Hurricane. Maybe Striker2 with all the Sword Knights? You lose Rag/Alexia, but extra movement is very powerful.
    I don’t know what is going on with the gunmage force. That one seems so much like.. Ooops, we did lightning, gotta do dudes in funny hats. I would have liked to have seem the ATGMs lose Crit off the Brutal Shot in theme. That might have given them a real role. (Particularly for marshaled warjacks.)

  5. I had the exact same initial reaction to Caine3. The feat can totally break an opponent’s back, but if it doesn’t work… you’re gonna have a bad time.

    On the other hand, I’m actually taking the Gunmage Theme for a spin right now with Haley2. It denies you both of Cygnar’s “broken” units, admittedly, but even nerfed the ATGM’s and Blazers aren’t that far behind on the power curve… and anything that gives you free GMCA’s is worth a look, I think.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *