Monday, February 11, 2013

Convergence of Cyriss thoughts

I, like many of you, was extremely excited to hear the announcement by Privateer Press that they were releasing a new faction for Warmachine.  Of course there were some grumpy people complaining about Retribution and Minions needing more love, but generally I think everyone was pretty excited about the new faction.  There's simultaneously not much and a lot to talk about the new faction and without knowing much about them, I figured it would still be good to review some of what we know about the faction.  There are some things we can expect and assume from the announcement video but there are also some things we can't assume yet and those issues need to be mentioned too.

If you haven't already seen the announcement video (or you need a refresher), take a look at it here:

So let's jump right in and see what we know already and I'll add in some extra bits that I remember from the announcement and Q&A session at Templecon.

  • The faction will be released with 5 warcasters and a complement of warjacks (called 'vectors'), units, and solos.  The faction will have the "most plastic" of any faction released thus far, but the warcasters and solos will still be in metal (makes sense for smaller-scale production).
  • Cyriss will receive both a Battle Engine and a Colossal shortly after release.
  • Vectors (their warjacks) will have values of X for their MAT and RAT values, where X is the respective values of their controlling warcaster.  In the announcement video we saw that we could have MAT 7 RAT 2, or MAT 5 RAT 5, thus drastically changing how the vectors could perform under different warcasters.
  • First faction to receive a light-warjack which can repair other warjacks.
  • Vectors have an induction node instead of a cortex (probably functions the same way as a cortex) which allows the vector to hand off a spent focus point to another vector within 6", once per turn.
  • Each warcaster has a field marshall ability which will affect all of the models of their battlegroup.  We saw that each vector could count as an arc node or each getting shield guard.
  • Certain models will have the ability to switch between multiple weapon modes to gain different abilities.
That's what we know about the faction so far and there are some interesting points to discuss.  The first is that the induction node might sound a bit broken at first, but it's only one focus point that can be given and we're not sure if it follows normal allocation rules or not.  It was shown in the video that a warjack with an existing focus point was able to accept an inducted focus so we know it doesn't work like power booster, but we don't know if a warjack with 3 focus can receive one via induction or not.  All this induction node really means is that you'll be encouraged to play with more than just one or two warjacks in order to make the most of this innate ability.

Another point that I find interesting is that we can also assume that all of the models in the faction will have the construct rule, but we saw in the video that warcasters have a rule where they still count as generating souls.  It's possible that this rule extends to all of the humanoid solos and units so as to not completely screw over Cryx (like they need the help) but it would still mean that spells/effects that affect 'living' models would largely not work against this faction, which will shift the meta a bit but perhaps not as much as we would think (sorry, Rasheth).

The last thing I'd like to mention is what Hacksaw (author in charge of Steamroller and competitive events) said about playtesting against the Convergence of Cyriss.  He said it was like playing against a Rube Goldberg machine where your opponent will do all of these things which will feed into one another and at the end of their turn you'll either be dead, or they'll just shrug and say "well, at least it was cool!".  I'm excited to see a new faction for the game and see them across the tabletop.  They don't really look like they'll be my cup o' tea so I'll just stick with what works for me for now, but it'll be good to see others pick them up and play them.
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