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Tutorial Jack of All Trades Slann

Discussion in 'Lizardmen & Saurian Ancients Tactics' started by Scalenex, Aug 9, 2013.

  1. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    Jack of All Trades Slann


    Wandering Deliberations lets you get 8 Signature spells instead of picking a lore normally. I don’t know if that’s a better idea than taking High Magic or a conventional lore, but I have some ideas on how to maximize Wandering Deliberations Slann's (hence forth WD Slann) utility when looking at it by itself.


    The Dream Team


    Flaming Shooters

    These all are 24 inch and cause Flaming hits. Good for leading off for the other spells when hitting Regenerating or Flammable targets or just clearing away Chaff. These are good for the early stages of any game when the two armies are some distance away. Since all of these spells cause Flaming attacks you want to be wary of playing this Slann build against High Elves and Chaos Dwarfs, both have units with special Ward Saves versus flaming attacks.

    They are not bad for later game shooting to remove the last of the chaff or collect your victory points blasting the fleeing dregs of a routed unit, but you usually want to save your dice for the battlefield control spells.

    Fireball: With the variable number of hits, this is the best WD spell for taking wounds off a large unit. The cheap version works great for knocking down chaff. Kindleflame is unlikely to ever come up.

    Shem’s Burning Gaze: The augmented version of this spell is the only WD spell that hits at high Strength but the low strength version is a nice cheap way to get flaming hits. If you are fighting a Daemons or undead, this spell should be used every turn.

    Searing Doom: Not all armies have low armor save units, but most have at least one, so this spell will come in handy most games. Not only is it good for zapping knights but it bypasses the high Toughness of Monsters with significant Scaly Skin saves.

    Battlefield Control

    After you softened your opponent up with long range damage, it’s time to move your melee units in. Now your magic phase is all about sliding the CR odds in your favor.

    Wyssan’s Wildform: There is no army build where this won’t come in handy. This spell is ideal for Sauri but everyone likes +1 to Strength and Toughness. Once you get your forces into close combat, you’ll want this spell every magic phase. The lore attribute might matter if you are buffing a big dino or some Saurus Cavalry, the latter is especially attractive because you would boost the Strength of the Saurus and their mounts.

    Earth Blood: It’s limited to the Slann and his unit, so you won’t get a lot of use out of this if you aren’t taking Temple Guard. The extra save comes in handy in a tough fight. In my opinion it’s probably not worth casting this spell for the Lifebloom attribute alone since this is usually a two dice spell, but the wound healed is a nice bonus if you wanted Regeneration 5+ anyway.

    Iceshard Blizzard: Less important than Wildform, but nice anyway. The -1 is most effective when the opponent already has a low WS (thus this can be combined with Melekoth’s Miasma handsomely. The lore attribute is nice, but many flyers are big. Roiling Skies will sting against Terradons and Eagles, but you are wasting your time trying to use the Iceshard Blizzard alone things like Terrorgheists and dragons. Don’t forget it can give most artillery a 50/50 chance of losing their shot which will give you a little breathing room while you are trying to get your war machine hunters into attack range.

    Melkoth’s Mystifying Miasma: You have a lot of options on what to hex. More often than not, you’ll want to hit the enemy's WS. If you got dice to spare (unlikely with eight spells) you might as well go for the extended version. A D3 movement dock does relatively little to impede an advance and the BS dock needs to involve a very large unit of shooters to matter. I’d say the BS docking version is mainly for Tomb King archers since they often are fielded in large blocks and their special power ignores penalties to hit but does NOT ignore penalties to BS. If you are not hitting someone with an Initiative based attack, docking the Intiative alone of your enemies is generally a waste of power dice. Saurus will probably strike last anyway and Skinks will usually strike first anyway (and not do much damage). The Smoke and Mirrors lore attribute will come in handy once in a while to pull your toad’s butt out of the frying pan. In that case the lore attribute alone may be why you are casting this spell.

    The Odd One Out

    I didn’t lump this in with the first category because it is short range. If you aren’t taking a Skink priest to help you target your spells, you are likely to get two opportunities to Spirit Leech something at best. Also, Spirit Leech is the only damaging spell in the WD that's not flaming. Worth keeping in mind if you want to Spirit Leech a regenerating creature, better to hit it with a flaming missile first.

    Spirit Leech: Since the WD has one Death sniping spell rather than three sniping spell it’s a bit of a gamble to snipe an enemy hero if they aren’t already on their last wound. The real power is for monster killing. MOST monsters have relatively low Ld leadership so Spirit Leech is a nice a cannon substitute for us. Just make sure the target you are aiming at is not one of the rare higher Ld monsters. The lore attribute won’t likely net you many extra dice but with eight spells you can probably put any dice you get to good use. Also I tend to take the Standard of Discipline 4 times out of five anyway. The current FAQ lets the Slann cast Spirit Leech at Ld 10 when they have that Standard.


    Army Builds


    Since your Slann is a Jack of all Trades it’d be hard to imagine an army build that WOULDN'T work. Another fun aspect of this build is that your strategy (probably) does not depend on any single spell, so your opponent will have no clear priority for using his dispels.

    As pointed out to me later in this thread, the one thing you probably shouldn't include in an army with the WD Slann is a Bastiladon packing a Solar Engine. With all those magic missiles at your disposal the Beam of Chotec is a bit redundant.

    One thing I learned from repeated use of the WD Slann is that the one major thing the WD Slann lacks is the means to bring down high toughness small units like most Monsters and Monstrous Cavalry. To compensate I would recommend a Carnosaur, some Kroxigor, Saurus cowboys with great weapons or equivalent magic weapons, and/or some Temple Guard with the Razor Standard.

    There is no reason a solo WD Slann would not do well but I think you are cheating yourself of the Slann’s options if you don’t bunker it. Earthblood pretty much needs a bunker to be useful and with one or two Skink priests running around the board you can blast things with the Light, Death, Fire, or Metal spells at pretty much whoever you want. The buffs and hexes will make your Slann bunker a solid tough center. Since the Slann’s spells are all cheapies your odds of miscasting are relatively low so taking out swaths of Tempe Guard with a miscast is a relatively small concern though I have miscast on two or three dice myself so I personally still spring for Soul of Stone if points aren't too tight..

    You probably want to consider giving your Slann disciplines Resevoir of Eldritch Energy and/or Harmonic Convergence to boost his power dice. Even though the spells are cheap, you have a lot of spells so will want all the dice you can get.

    As alluded to before, a Skink priest or two is a very good idea since you have lots of spells that can be cast through them. They might as well be level one since the odds of you needing a Skink to cast a spell for you are pretty small (though a Skink is better than nothing if you whiff a two dice casting roll with your Slann).

    Since WD Slann lack spells to thin out large units, I would suggest taking Salamanders in most lists with WD Slann.

    If someone would like to rebut this I’d be interested in reading the response, but I think a WD Slann would not pair well with a second Slann (or even humble Tet). Eight spells will chew up a lot of power dice. Twelve or Sixteen spells will leave the two Slann starved for Power Dice. A High Magic Slann would be redundant since High Magic is kind of a Jack of All Trades lore already and you certainly wouldn’t need to bother swapping out High magic for signature spells since you have your bases covered already. Having a Light Slann would mean your Banishment spell will be stronger but what happens if you don’t roll Banishment? If you do what a WD Slann and a partner, I’d recommend Death because it can generate extra power dice for you.


    Book of Ashur


    With a lot of low casting spells you will want to stretch your dice as much as possible. The Book of Ashur will help, but Don't Take my word for it.


    Storm of Magic


    With the rules as written, a WD Slann would have access to 26 cataclysm spells. I would think that bringing a WD Slann to a Storm of Magic game would be a great way to be accused of being a poor sport by exploiting a loophole. Then your Slann isn’t a Jack of All Trades, but is now a Master of All Trades.

    Assuming you aren’t bothered by the ethical ramifications of a WD SOM Slann, you have another problem. Assuming you are not a Warhammer prodigy, your mind will not be able to easily process what you should do with your gazillion options. I’d recommend casting Fantastic Foresight from Heavens often because of it’s cheap to cast and very useful for boosting your magic phases or forcing your opponent’s dispel dice out early. After you got Foresight up, to avoid having your synapses break down from your decision making, just look at your Wheel of Magic. Whichever lore the spinner landed on that turn, focus on that lore. Don’t worry about maxing out on the “best” spells. Just use the wheel to exercise your tactical flexibility.
     
  2. Caneghem
    Carnasaur

    Caneghem New Member

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    There are a couple reasons that I don't see myself going the WD Slann route.

    1) Bastiladons exist - I'm planning on having two of these in my army to support my troops with Initiative and to spam out horrifying flaming magic missiles. So right there, a couple of the WD spells become redundant.

    2) The few signatures I want, I can substitute out from High Magic.

    However, on the positive side, the WD Slann starts with Searing Doom and Spirit Leech, both of which are devastating on turn 1 AND can both be Arcane Vassaled through a skink priest. I guess if I weren't taking Bastiladons it would be a good choice as well, to get those all important flaming attacks.
     
  3. Lizardmatt
    Troglodon

    Lizardmatt New Member

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    I'm also going the Bastiladon route, and won't go WD Slaan for a different reason.
    I need a spell that my opponent is afraid of, so that my bound spells get ignored.
    Signatures are good, but not awesome.
    Being able to threaten a purple sun makes the bound spells better.

    -Matt
     
  4. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    I used a WD Slann in a big game today. I was pleased with the spell list. I always had something to do. I did have three consecutive miscasts with three dice. I managed to barely avoid losing my Slann in a Vortex. I still think WD Slann are good but I no longer think Wandering Deliberations means you shouldn't take Soul of Stone.
     
  5. johho
    Skink

    johho New Member

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    I am building my WD Slann for a 1700p game. I will still have a Bastiladon, with 1 dice I might get a dispell out of my oponent or otherwise I will get that good damage into the enemies lines.

    I have tried to build the Slann like this, and it is on point for what is allowed for LORDS.

    Slann
    Soul of Stone
    WD
    Harmonic Covergence
    Channeling Staff
    BSB

    To boost the HC I will bring the channeling staff to try to get more out of the channeling.

    How is this compared to the book of asyr? Any thought on that?

    And as support I have a priest lvl 1 running around with some skirmishers.
     
  6. rantapanda
    Kroxigor

    rantapanda Member

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    Searing doom and Spirit leech are good spells to have right off the bat.
    But what do you do when u face armies with hordes. I guess its not that common in the current meta, but im not sure would it be better to go High with contemplations to get the fiery convocation or perhaps by chance some other big spells.
    As lizardmatt said, we need those spells the opponent is afraid of as well.
     
  7. Pinktaco
    Skar-Veteran

    Pinktaco Vessel of the Old Ones Staff Member

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    Salamanders + magic? How big is the horde we're speaking of? I personally think the answer to hordes only being big nasty spells is wrong. Taking a horde means less maneuverable, easier to hit with salamanders etc. He'll we can probably take an OB with crown of command and stop most hordes for the rest of the game. Is it the big witch elf horde with no armour save you're afraid of?
     
  8. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    I agree with Pinktaco. Salamanders are adequate for thinning out most hordes. If said horde refuses to panick you can smack it with your Temple Guard and go nuts with Ice Shard, Miasma, Wyssans, and Earthblood.
     
  9. Pinktaco
    Skar-Veteran

    Pinktaco Vessel of the Old Ones Staff Member

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    .. Or just use an oldblood with AoD halbard, and dawnstone (although that would leave out the book of ashur and only allow for WD + channel combo). He can take 75 S6 hits before he dies. If he's in close combat with any horde at turn 3 he probably won't die unless unlucky rolls.

    Cheaper than our templeguards and probably more safe :p
     
  10. Eladimir
    Salamander

    Eladimir New Member

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    Yep, I'm sold, can't wait to give WD Slann a try.
     
  11. rantapanda
    Kroxigor

    rantapanda Member

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    heh. maybe ill give WD a go as well
     
  12. johho
    Skink

    johho New Member

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    This saturday I will try this build out, a 1700p game and the first time I get to use the Slann.
    If it will work the same way as in my mind I will have a pleasent day with 2-3 wins :)
     
  13. Eladimir
    Salamander

    Eladimir New Member

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    I played a WD game vs a super hard gunline empire army and it went pretty well.
    Karl Franz, 10 Inner circle nights
    BSB, Level 4 heavens
    40 halberds
    3 cannons, 1 hellblaster
    1 frost pheonix
    2 unicorns
    some assorted handgunners


    Death snipe worked to remove the level 4 mage, metal took off some knights, ice shard blizzard never stopped a single cannon ball unfort.

    In the end I lost cause we had to stop on turn 5, when I was just finally ready to get to his lines.
     
  14. The Red Devil
    Troglodon

    The Red Devil Defender of Hexoatl Staff Member

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    Looks interesting, def. going to give this a try in one of my games.
     
  15. Mr Phat
    Skink Chief

    Mr Phat 9th Age Army Support

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    ...did I miss something?
     
  16. Eladimir
    Salamander

    Eladimir New Member

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    Storm of magic monster in rare. The frostie was annoying but the unicorns were too.
    16 points, M10, immune to psyc, blocked up my stegadon so the cannons could have another shot.
     
  17. Vadraha
    Skink

    Vadraha New Member

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    I use WD slann in all my lists with the book of ashur, a big block of 5 rippers in the rear of a big block with wyssans and miasma hitting on 3's with a re-roll and str5 armour piercing?!?! Not much survives that. With having the book you can pretty much 2 dice every spell and if you get the power dice can get off up to 6 spells a turn I'll never go back as I think high magic is a waste of time
     
  18. johho
    Skink

    johho New Member

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    I tried it out yesterday and I liked it. But I do feel that I am missing out of more powerfull spells. The earthblood (life) was really good with all the canons comming in on the bunker.
     
  19. MarchoftheStegs
    Saurus

    MarchoftheStegs New Member

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    I was a big user of wandering deliberation for the first 10 months after the book came out. But my meta became heavily dragonbaned and then Wandeing deliberations doesn't work so well.

    However Wyssan's and Earthblood together make templeguard damn near unkillable
     
  20. Ixt
    Terradon

    Ixt Well-Known Member

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    This strategy sounds like a real...
    "Slann-dunk!"

    (facepalm) ;)

    It's certain that I'll be trying it out in the future!
     

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