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Tutorial A Guide to Seraphon Battalions

Discussion in 'Seraphon Tactics' started by Killer Angel, Sep 8, 2017.

  1. Killer Angel
    Skar-Veteran

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    THUNDERQUAKE STARHOST

    UNITS REQUIRED:

    1 Engine of the Gods (EotG) OR 1 Troglodon
    2 Stegadon or Bastiladon (any comb)
    1 unit of Kroxigors OR 1 unit of handlers + 1 unit of razordons / salamanders

    Minimum size cost: 910 pts (Starhost, Troglodon, 2 x Stegadon, handlers + 1 sally) - just for the record... it's bizarre, but it makes you realize that this starhost is costly
    nearly max size costs: 1150 (Starhost, EotG, 2 x Bastiladon, handlers + 4 razordons)



    It makes little sense to list the stats of the units of the Starhost; i'll give a little summary of the main abilities, we'll see later how to put them at use, with the different settings of the Starhost.

    EotG abilities:
    Engine of the Gods. To be reliable needs a Slann and possibly Curse of Fate.

    Troglodon abilities:
    Primeval roar (gives -1 to bravery); Drawn to the screams (+3 to charge if wounds with spittle)

    They are both good leaders, with different abilities. EotG works more in combo with the other behemots and Slann, Troglodon is more a "lone wolf" that can somehow deep strike
    _____

    Bastiladon
    :
    you know it; one of the best tank in the game with its save 3+ that ignores rend and ward save 4+ vs mortal wounds; comes in two flavors (the shooting and the snake spammer), that work in totally different ways. Slow but relentless.

    Stegadon:
    a cannon on steroids when you need shooting. Then, you point it in a direction and unleash the charge.
    The skink Alpha's ability is pure gold, blessed by the Old Ones.

    Kroxigor:
    a usually suboptimal unit (tailored against hordes) that shine in this starhost. A pity that brute power is what we don't lack.

    Salamanders / Razordons
    this is not the place to discuss about the merit of one unit above the other one. They can offer a truly solid shooting support, be it with few shots with high rend ahd high damage, or with a hail of spikes that counts on numbers.



    The Starhost gives:
    - in the hero phase, each model of the starhost heals one wound. 1d3 wounds if within 10" from a Slann
    - at the start of each combat phase, the EotG or the Troglodon, can declare if the Starhost's units are swift (re-roll failed charge and hit rolls) or savage (re-roll failed wound and save rolls); units must be within 8" of EoTG/Troglodon to receive this effect, and the effect lasts 'til the next combat phase (basically, you won't have it only in the shooting phase of your first turn, if you start first)




    HOW TO MAKE IT WORK

    With such a large number of options, it really hard to explain the "right" way to play the battalion. There is not a single one.

    Of course, especially with the new GHB, a Slann is almost a must have: not only our favorite Flying Frog brings a lot of powerful support, but it will exploit the healing ability of the Starhost, a thing we are desperately in need of, if we are playing with Seraphon Allegiance and cannot have as allies empire's mage.
    The Slann should probably be your general, given that you are already using 3 behemoths and they will be your hitters, so things as oldbloods on carnosaur may be at risk of overlapping roles. You're free to experiment, but I'll consider a Slan as general (things are already complicated this way, I don't want to open too much scenarios)

    Considering the amount of heavy units we have, imo there's little need to have a double teleport: imo it's better to have the Slann as Great Rememberer, to have all the magic support you need (especially Curse of Fate).

    Main Dinosaur: EotG
    You will probably want to keep nearby your Group of behemots and the Slann.
    The Slann and Curse of Fate will let you optimize the effect of the Engine, and you'll basically have a big threatening block of behemoths that will (probably) form the main force of your army, advanging and healing.
    You can shape the Starhost in different ways:

    EotG with 2 Bastiladon.
    a slow moving block, almost immortal, that shoots everything within a solid range (especially if you're using 2 solar beams and point to the d6 mortal wounds of the Engine).
    EotG with 1 bastiladon and 1 Stegadon.
    the same as before, as stegadon can shoot too, and can charge whatever approaches your moving castle.
    EotG with 2 stegadon.
    eheheh.... even considering the support unit, the Starhost will have a move of 8"! It will be a really fast group of dinosaurs , and your Slann can easily keep up if runs.

    You have many ways to grant re-rolls of 1s to hit (alphs skinks, Slann's constellation), and if the units are Savage, you can re-roll saves and to wound.
    Again, the "setting" depends on what you want to accomplish
    EotG with 2 Steggies and Razordons?, steggies and razordons already reroll 1s to hit, tnx to Alpha skinks and handlers, so you'll probably want the hunter constellation, to gain +1 to run and charge.
    If you are more in need to fight in a static way, then support your Starhost with an Astrolith bearer. WIth savage, you are going to re-roll all: to hit, to wound, saves (pretty solid) and you can pick the constellation that gives+1 to cast spells.
    THe triple reroll can be huge with a large unit of kroxigors, but you cannot fail even if you are bringing our small shooters.
    Keep in mind that, with a single teleport, you can do little wonders with razordons: they shoot at 12", so you can teleport them and shoot 8d6, re-rolling 1s (with the right constellation).

    Side note about Bastiladon(s): the kind of equipment you assign to them makes a big difference:
    Solar beam is made for mid-long range shooting, so your Basti acts like a shooting tank.
    Ark of Sotek spam mortal wounds in a short range: the more the enemy units, the better; you can keep it in a defensive position, to act as scarecrow and guard objective, or you can use it offensively: drop (possibly with teleport) the basti near the core of the enemy's army and let it do its work, supported by the healing of the starhost.


    Main dinosaur: Troglodon.
    Troglodon i certainly our weakest dinosaur, and the divining rod is useless ('til we have a Slann), but it can be a nice hunter.
    You have your starhost block... but when you see an isolated target you can unleash the troglodon.
    Use the "swift" ability, buff Trog with Curse of Fate and Teleport it at 9". d3 shots of noxious spittle at rerollable 3+, and wounds at 3+. With curse of fate, there are good chances to have it wound... at that point you can charge with a +4 (+3 of "drawn by screams" and +1 from Curse), rerollable.
    WIth the hunters constellation you'll have another +1 (taking you to a 4 rerollable, or a 7 rerollable in case the Spittle doesn't wound), which should grant you a solid chance to make the charge.
    In melee, you'll deliver 6 bite Attacks at 4+ rerollable / 2+, for 2 damage each), plus 2 clawed forelimbs.
    Heck, if you plan to do so, you can as well take a Starpriest and go Serpent Staff upon it.
    If Trog is wounded, teleport it back near the Slann and heal it d3.

    IN case you want to go heavy on dinosaurs, you can indeed consider also a Carnosaur and some knight (hello firelance starhost!).
    At that point, you can stack maluses to bravery, tnx to Stardrake icons and primeval roar, before using carnosaur's blood roar.
    Stardrake icons, primeval roar and Dread Saurian are the most terrifying thing I can think of. At that point, feel free to use a double teleport slann and wipe away elite units just scaring them to Death.



    EVALUATION:

    Power level: medium-high
    .
    You need to invest a lot of points in this starhost, but you'll have a battalion that can (and will) be the main bulk of your army. Support it with magic, place some battleline to screen ad take objectives, another 2-3 utility units and you should be golden.
    Problems can arise if the enemy kills some key unit (the Slann, or the EotG), that can cripple the starhost, but you will still have the other dinosaurs, and a couple of bastiladons is not a thing to laught at.
    The goodness of the battalion depends on the setting and on circumstances (especially when playing with scenarios and objectives), but at its worse, it will just be a medium power level.

    Low points game (750-1000)
    Sadly, you simply cannot play it at low points games...

    Mid points game (1250-2000)
    It cannot be played at 1250 (unless you got suicidal tendencies)
    Around 2000 points you should be fine. you will have the Starhost, the Slann, the battleline and you'll still have points for something else.

    High points game (2250-2750)
    Great. You can field a fully geared Starhost and support it with anything you need, for max versatility.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
    TheSkeptic, tom ndege, Tokek and 2 others like this.
  2. Seraphage
    Bastiladon

    Seraphage Well-Known Member

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    Let me say how much I love this thread, thanks for your efforts man !
     
  3. Paul Beenis
    Cold One

    Paul Beenis Active Member

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    @Killer Angel These threads are pure gold! Reading the thunderquake one and I'm already thinking of heaps of different possible plays and tactics. Love your work here!
     
  4. Killer Angel
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    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys, much appreciated. :)
     
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  5. Seraphage
    Bastiladon

    Seraphage Well-Known Member

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    Whenever it says "did not move" for the rest of the units, it also means pile in ! So the batallion gets way weaker as you will not almost ever get it and unless the opponent piles in with a horde and tries to maximize damage ?
     
  6. LordRibbit
    Chameleon Skink

    LordRibbit Well-Known Member

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    Pretty sure it says you get the d3 damage if you don't move in the movement or charge phase. Pile in happens in the combat phase....
     
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  7. Seraphage
    Bastiladon

    Seraphage Well-Known Member

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    Oh thank god ( I didn't have the rulebook on me and only remembered the "if not moved" part ) because the buff would hardly make any difference if didn't work with pile in !
     
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  8. Canas
    Bastiladon

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    you should probably distinguish between the load-outs for the bastilidons and stegadons. The difference in paystyle between say 2 solar engines or 2 arks of soteks is fairly significant.
     
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  9. Killer Angel
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    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    done.
     
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  10. Canas
    Bastiladon

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Still missing flamer stegadons vs crossbow :p

    Minor sidenote on the ark of sotek, it doesn't necesarly gain or lose effectiveness with the amount of available targets. At first glance it might seem very tempting to dump him in the middle of an enemy army. Having (at least) 6 targets does guarantee all his mortal wounds will hit something. But, if 5 of those 6 targets are fodder it is barely more effective than simply chasing that 1 key-target. On the other hand, with 12 rolls it is reliable enough to deal some damage, even if there is only 1 available target. As such having the bastillidon chase key targets is most likely of more value than simply dumping him amidst the enemy.
     
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  11. Seraphage
    Bastiladon

    Seraphage Well-Known Member

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    Well I am guessing that the strategy makes the suggestion with things like " you go after things that matter " in mind because it is a strategy after all and it wouldn't make sense to just go ahead.
    He should include this though just in case new players will read and get confused, good comment ;)
     
  12. Canas
    Bastiladon

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    There's plenty of people, not just novice players, you can bait into hitting 5 fodder targets instead of your fancy key-unit. Don't underestimate the appeal of hitting as much as possible at once has. Especially if the key-unit is relativly boring (much more fun to hit that horde of stormvermin or that scary giant dragon than that puny priest). Hence it should probably be explicit, even for more experienced people :p
     
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  13. Killer Angel
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    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Ark of Sotek: usually i go for those 1-2 true target, then i try to swarm all the other units I can, to maximize the results. That said, your points are valid, but I wouldn't want to enter too much in details about how to employ single units, and I'll try to explain why.

    These are evaluations about Starhosts, that underline the pros and cons of each battalion, gives general advices on how to use them, what buffs they need, what approaches you can have when you have different choices in units, and similar.

    To remind the difference in style between solar beam and Ark is on spot... to go in details about targets selection opens a can of worm i I would like to keep closed, to avoid flooding the Guides with excessive details.
    Because at that point we should cover the equipment for the Scarvet on Carnosaur, or we should give different advices on the approach if you are facing Tzeentch, Ogres or Flesh Eater Courts, how to optimize multiple charges and so on.
    It's a useful debate inside the thread, but IMO it would be a burden for the specific Guide
     
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  14. Seraphage
    Bastiladon

    Seraphage Well-Known Member

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    Agreed ! I will also erase my comments soon as we don't want it to be full of conversations and some small breaks of the actual thing hehe !
     
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  15. Killer Angel
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    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    There is no reason to.
    The debate is cool ;)
     
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  16. Canas
    Bastiladon

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    I agree with most of it, just not that the difference between the ark and solar beam is the same as the difference between the various pointy objects a scar-vet can hold while riding a carnosaur. Weapons like the ark and solar beam, or skink blowpipes vs clubs, change the whole use of the unit. A club vs a sword does not, At least not to nearly the same degree.

    anyways, let's agree to disagree I suppose :p
     
  17. Killer Angel
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    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely yes, and that's the reason why i've edited the guide, explaining in a (hopefully) better way the difference between the 2 settings. My example of the weaponry of the ScarVet was a sort of extreme case, to explain why I wouldn't enter in details.

    That said, I always appreciate suggestions: the scope of this thread is to give a useful tool to the use of battalion, after all.

    And with the next one, we'll finish with the ones listed in our Battletome! :)
     
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  18. Paul Beenis
    Cold One

    Paul Beenis Active Member

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    With the ark of sotek It's statistically 2 mortal wounds if against a single target right! With curse of fates that should be 3. I wonder whether that compares to just sniping a single character with the solar engine I think that puts out on average around 5 damage considering a 4+ save
     
  19. Canas
    Bastiladon

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    The engine hits on average 2.3 times. With rend -1 that allows for a save of 3+ to be about equal on average. A worse save makes it slightly better than the ark a better save puts the ark ahead.

    However, the engine is far less reliable in exchange for more range and higher potential when everything succeeds
     
  20. Killer Angel
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    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Yep, when I play a single basti usually it's with solar beam.
    With 2 basti i use the laser on one and the snakes on the other.
    Of course, against daemons, the solar beam's average damage increases, so 2 basti with lasers may be the best option.
     

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