Another new thing, more for my benefit than for anyone else. I’m going to ramble on about a random Warmachine caster for a while (my thoughts/opinions, strengths and weaknesses, ups and downs, why I like them, why I don’t). No set schedule for this, but I have punched all the casters into a random number generator, so lets see what comes up! (also, no warlocks because I have very limited experience with Hordes, I might add them in one day *shrug*). So, without further ado, here’s number 73, Skarre, Queen of the Broken Coast!
So Skarre has one of the better field marshal abilities in the game at the moment, Future Sight (she also personally has Future Sight). This means is that she wants to be running a decently sized battle group because her field marshal ability allows her jacks to be very focus efficient. There are a number of jacks that she wants to take; my number one pick for her is a Corrupter. Due to its second shot type, a Corrupter servers as a limit breaker for Skarre, enabling her to expend hp to maintain upkeeps without much risk of being low hp on your opponent’s turn (you cut to maintain upkeeps, the Corruptor heals the damage in the same turn). This allows for more focus to be fed to jacks or used for spells. Coupled with Black Spot, a Corrupter can put a staggering number of boxes back onto Skarre. It also serves to free up points in the list via its arc node shot. Any of the harpoon jacks are also quite solid due to Black Spot, it can shoot and reel one target in, kill it, then pull the next target in via a second shot from Black Spot. Unlike most of the Cryxian casters, Skarre lacks an armor debuff, with that in mind, she really wants a jack that can bring the pain. Deathjack is a touch pricey, Seethers, on the other hand, are fantastic! Punching at only at -1 POW from Deathjack, the fact that they can run or charge for free is a wonderful combo with Skarre (load it up with focus, send it in, 5 POW17 attacks will do work, Future Sight helps to extend that focus). Unlike the majority of Cryxian warcasters, Skarre doesn’t want (or take) souls, this opens her list up to units and solos that do want souls (Pistols Wraiths, Soulhunters, etc). Skarre doesn’t really demand anything but hitting power from her list which means she’s a very flexible caster.
Skarre wants a battlegroup. As mentioned above, Future Sight is one of the best Field Marshal abilities in the game. She’ll run pretty much any Cryx jack decently, but she needs them to hit the opponent fairly hard on their base numbers alone. Unfortunantly, she does very little outside of her field marshal to support her battlegroup.
I’ll list her defensive tech (spoiler, it’s a short list): Feat, Admonition, Death Ward. That’s all folks. Skarre really is a offensive caster who wants to be slinging spells, not delivering her army to the enemy.
I misread this feat at first, I thought it was a DEF adjustment of ±5 depending on whether you were an enemy or an ally. It is not that. It is a defensive feat, dropping charge immunity and +5 defense on allied targets and passive out a -5 penalty to attack rolls for enemy targets. This feat is absolutely marginal even in the best case scenario (you get contest a zone for a turn). While a 5 point swing in never a bad thing, it does little to enable Skarre or her army to kill things (which is really what she needed).
Skarre will spend most of her time slinging spells around at the enemy. She two moderate nukes that are prime targets for a Skarlock to replicate (one passes out continuous corrosion, the other is basically a trick shot). Skarre is also deadly dangerous in melee with 3 initials and future sight to conserve focus (also, 13+5d6 on the charge!). If she ever gets a charge lane on the opponent’s caster, the game is probably over (and she threatens 11″).
Not my favorite spell list. There are a couple of nukes, an amazing DEF debuff (like OMG Black Spot! Extra attacks for everybody!), a situational debuff and a couple of minor buffs (ARM and Admonition). With her ability to pay HP to maintain upkeeps, Skarre has the potential to start every turn with a full load of focus while also running her 3 upkeep spells (which is an impressive thought). With Future Sight serving to compensate for her Focus stat of 7, she’s likely to be able to toss out two offensive spells a turn without missing any (although that does leave her without a camp).
Things are not fantastic for Skarre. She has the inklings of a glorious DEF skew caster, she is just missing the DEF buff. Under feat turn, she’s sitting at an unholy DEF 21 (which is nigh unboostable). Unfortunately, she suffers from what all DEF skew-ish casters do, she will die to fire and blast damage…Nothing especially amazing stands out beyond her feat (Admonition saves her from 1 charing model).
Composite Score: 6.5/10
So as I mentioned previously, Skarre wants at least one Corrupter to add to her focus efficiency. Coupled with Future Sight, she’ll want 4 to 6 heavies to really bring the punch to her debuffed targets. Skarre doesn’t demand any specific units, but she doesn’t mind seeing Satyxis scattered around (as well as the Satyxis Raider Captain since she herself is a Satyxis model and benefits from being knockdown immune).
#1, Grievous Wounds! Skarre can really leverage her health bar for a number of different purposes but without healing, she’ll bleed out long before the enemies factor in (on a big turn, she can cut herself for 9 boxes, over half of her hp). She suffers from upkeep removal (most of her spell list are upkeeps) and like any defense incline model, knockdown and stationary are both beautiful assassination options. Fire isn’t such a big threat to Skarre (being able to cut for upkeeps means that she doesn’t suffer from camping that last focus for the burn) BUT she is looking at an average of 4 damage a round from being on fire. Lastly, Skarre really struggles into ARM skew. She has no method of buffing the hitting power of her army, so if her jacks can’t kill it, she won’t be able to remove it from the board.
|Daughters of the Flame||Alten Ashley
Pretty standard fair here, Warcasters focus on Purification ARM skew or Attrition (hello Brand of Heresy!). The Reckoner can help lower Skarre’s defense to open her up to assassination. I mention the Indictor specifically for the potential of it denying her upkeep game late in the game (also because Skarre struggles against ARM skew). Ashely is an obvious threat (risk cutting if you can’t heal?) and Eyriss brings an interesting dynamic to the list (probably the most interesting counter piece). Eyriss gives the caster of upkeep spells on units she shoots with an option, maintain the upkeep spell and take d3 damage, or loose the upkeep spell. Skarre is especially vulnerable to this source of chip damage since she runs 4 upkeeps (and there’s always shooting your own models in the back of the head to try and clear Black Spot…).