Thursday, June 28, 2012

35 Point Army Deals: Mercenaries

Today I want to continue my series on Summer Deals for those wishing to go beyond Privateer Press' 25 Point Summer Deals.  While the deals they offer are nice, for those who are willing to spend a little more $$$ for effectiveness, I've decided to craft 35 point lists for each faction that I hope will both be a good starting point for building a collection with that army, while also being fairly effective and/or fun!  Today I will be creating a list for Mercenaries (specifically, the Four Star Syndicate) that clocks in at only $221.88 retail.  The added benefit here, of course, is that Mercenaries can be taken with other factions and so I purposely chose some models that I feel will both be effective and useful in other factions.  Without further ado, let's look at the list, breakdown of cost, and briefly how one can use the list to be most effective!

pMagnus (+6) - $9.99
- Mangler (8) - $29.99
- Rover (8) - $34.99
- Renegade (6) - $15.99
- Sylys Wyshnalyrr (2) - $11.99
Gregore Boomhowler & Co. (full, 9) - box: $47.99 + 2 blisters: $15.99 each
Gorman Di Wulfe (2) - $7.99
Rhupert Carvolo (2) - $9.99
Ragman (2) - $10.99
Orin Midwinter (2) - $9.99
Total: $221.88

Wow, that's a lot of solos!  That's quite alright, though, as this list builds heavily on synergy!  The first thing to note is that Magnus' battlegroup looks similar to what his old battlebox was, except I replaced the Renegate with a Rover.  You should note that the Rover comes in the new fancy plastic kit so you can even swap that Rover for a Mule, should you want to, but I think it offers a lot to this list, and let's explain why.

The most important rule for this list is Magnus' Resourceful rule which means that his upkeeps (of which he has 4) can be upkept on his battlegroup for free.  This is quite fantastic and consequently I included warjacks which would benefit the most from said upkeeps.  First, Snipe will be great on either the Rover or the Renegade (if you want to pop the Obliterator early) and Temper Metal will make the Rover truly difficult for your opponent to damage at ARM 22.  Blur probably won't be used much on your warjacks, but keep in mind that you could toss it onto Magnus himself and upkeep it for free, but I think there will be another use for it (hint: the spell affects a model/unit!).  Lastly, Iron Aggression just begs to be upkept on the Mangler to make it an incredibly efficient warjack - charging for free and getting boosted attack rolls for its Reach, Thresher (* attack)!  These great spells being upkept for free leave Magnus with plenty of fury to give himself some flexibility in either allocating focus for boosting damage rolls or casting spells (like Obliteration!).

Like I already mentioned, Blur is a great spell for a unit and Magnus will love casting it onto Boomhowler & Company to make them an obnoxious unit for your opponent to deal with, since they'll be DEF 15, ARM 16 against ranged and magical attacks and they can also easily take 4+ Tough.  While they natively have Tough and it might seem like a waste, Rhupert can be useful for giving them the two other abilities he can grant: +1 DEF & Terror, or Pathfinder - the former making the unit DEF 16 (!) against ranged/magical attacks and the latter allowing them to charge their target first.  If you use Rage Howler combined with Dirge of Mists you can also make these guys effectively DEF 15 in melee against warjacks or warbeasts!  Also, if you really want to, you can even toss Snipe on these guys to use their ranged attacks at a reasonable range until your opponent gets close.
Tarpit?  Boomhowler is thy name!

While Boomhowler & Co. already hit pretty hard, you can further guarantee that they'll damage those hard targets with the Ragman nearby - suddenly making them effectively P+S 14 which will even put dents into heavy warjacks!  Speaking of heavy warjacks, if you use Gorman to throw a Rust Bomb, you're suddenly hitting at an effective P+S 16 (let alone an effective P+S 21 with a Rover or Mangler!) against warjacks or an infamous Colossal!  With Ragman nearby and if Gorman throws a Rust Bomb onto a warjack, that means that even Orin Midwinter's Arc Lightning could damage it.  And on top of that, Orin will also provide you with some solid protection against spells (which could be vital if there's someone with Purification out there!) or just shooting lightning to clear out more infantry for the rest of your list.

Lastly, while Sylys might seem a bit out of place, he'll offer Magnus the opportunity to upkeep even Blur for free so you can potentially have 4 upkeep spells out there for free.  What will Magnus even do with all of that extra focus?  That's right, Obliteration.  With the Renegade as the only true arc node available for Mercenaries (not counting Fiona's Telgesh Mark), Magnus can use his extra focus to throw out a fully-boosted Obliteration on a target of his choice (usually a warcaster) - that should not be underestimated!  Oh yeah, I forgot - Sylys can use Arcane Secrets so that Magnus not only gets a fully-boosted Obliteration, but gets to add an extra die to hit and damage, and drop the lowest.

What you're left with is a solid list which surprisingly doesn't require too much finesse and yet has some solid synergy and is hard hitting, and you still have some fun tricks you can play thanks to your feat!  I imagine that using Hit and Run to run that ARM 22 Rover behind your enemy's lines will result in some interesting predicaments for your opponent!
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