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AoS Some Seraphon questions

Discussion in 'Seraphon Discussion' started by Canas, Nov 22, 2016.

  1. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Me and my girlfriend have recently started playing AoS, she likes painting, I like playing so we thought why not try it.

    Anyway, after buying the starter set it turned out she actually liked the game. She decided to continue with the stormcasts whereas I picked the seraphon to start with. I bought the start collecting box, as well as a starpriest, some extra warriors (totalling ~30 combined with the starter set) & a sunblood. From the starter box I build a carnosaur with an oldblood & the skink oracle I made into a second starpriest.

    However, I now have some questions.

    First of, I'm dissapointed by the magical capabilities of my starpriests. Given that the seraphon (and the old lizardmen) are supposedly amazing at all things magical having the 2 basic spells & 1 extra spell is a bit of a downer. Especially given that starlight fullfills a very similar role to mystic shield (unless you're facing chaos). In certain situations one or the other might be more beneficial (e.g. starlight will be usefull against something with mortal wounds), but it still fullfills roughly the same niche. And since a starpriest can only cast 1 spell it's not like you can use both to have the defensive effects synergies.

    However, it's not just the magical capabilities of the starpriests that seem a bit weaker than I expected. The same goes for the slann. Their special spell light of heavens does fullfill a different niche than the base spells, but with only those 3 spells it still doesn't feel like a master of the arcane. Now of course there is the summoning, which is obviously powerfull but there too are some major issues stopping them from feeling like masters of the arcane.

    1) it's not a unique superpower I'd asso├žiate with a true master who laughs at puny mortal mages, necromancers can essentially pull the same trick. In contrast the celestial constalations feel much more "special".
    2) It's limited by the spare models you have, which especially when you start collecting makes it a bit awkward. Though obviously this issue gets "fixed" once you have a sufficiently large collection compared to the starting army.
    3) Unless you're kind of an asshole, you'l have to put some limitation on the summoning (e.g. a chunk of the points used to build your army goes to it, or you can only use it X times or whatever). Which again feels a bit less like "ancient being who spend aeons mastering magic" and more like a glorified variant of the stormcast lightning strike.

    So I'm wondering, am I missing something? Is there another rulebook that gives slann and skink priests acces to more spells somehow?

    Then I have another question. In the sigmar starting set the stormcasts have a unit of prosecutors. They can outrun anything I have, and more importantly, they outrange everything apart from my priests' mystic bolt, and can shoot from far enough to be outside of charging range. This means that they could potentially just run around in circles while shooting at whatever is chasing them. And since they fly even driving them into a corner is going to be difficult since they can just jump over terrain & units blocking their path. Which leads me to the following question:

    Outside of just "have a longer range" or "run faster (or teleport stuff behind them)", how are you supposed to deal with highly mobile long ranged troops? The only alternative I can think of is sent in so many troops that you can encircle them/drive them into a corner. But that would come with a large number of casualties, not to mention that it opens you up for any other troops to counter attack you. There also don't seem to be any rules preventing units from abusing long range and movement like I remember there being in the lord of the rings game. If I remember correctly in that game you could only move half your movement if you wanted to shoot in the ranged phase. So what exactly is supposed to be used against that kind of threat?
     
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  2. Atelus
    Jungle Swarm

    Atelus New Member

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    In regards to the spellcasting, I see what you mean but I think for balancing reasons more than anything the Slann are given their arcane power in the form of various abilities, such as the constellations, effects on models like the Engine of the Gods, and the Summoning; you've got to think, they are using their arcane might just to make your army *exist* much less support it all that much, they are willing every single piece of your army into existence from a manifestation of starlight based entirely on their memories to make physical creatures that can harm and kill others in massive numbers. While sometimes how these powers interact with the tabletop isn't quite as impressive vs. other things like, say, necromancers doing somewhat similar stuff, its implications fluff-wise are a lot more extreme. If you want the real example of a Slann showing his arcane mastery, it's Lord Kroak smashing apart half the table with D3 mortal wounds over and over again. Kind of is what it is though, I guess the alternative was make Slann point costs absurdly high and go for making them super over the top.

    As far as handling prosecutors... I mean, you're asking 'besides answers to them, what answers are there?' essentially. Like our answers are going to be exactly that, outranging them, teleporting stuff to them, etc... with what you have collected currently, yeah they're going to be pretty difficult to deal with. In the future you're blasting away at them with Stegadons and Bastilodons, chasing them down with your fast Terradons or Ripperdactyls, or dropping a block of chameleon skinks on them. I struggled with the same type of stuff for a while, my collection was mostly around Saurus Knights, Warriors, my Carnosaur, Slann, Starpriest, etc... but I recently started getting Chameleon Skinks and a Bastilodon and Stegaon on the table and suddenly you're able to blow stuff like that way at range.
     
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  3. Bowser
    Slann

    Bowser Third Spawning

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    @Atelus is spot on here. The slann does a lot with support, the constellations, buffing the engine, being able to cast through skink heroes, or giving the flying ability.
    As far as out shooting them there isn't much you can do until you put together enough for a shadowstrike or somethong with monsters with range. Using your oracle as a skink priest instead of starpriest may also be beneficial. Rerolling saves and charges can be game changing .
     
  4. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Mm, I get that in the fluff the slann are pretty impressive, but that does make them a tad dissapointing in the actual game. I looked up the battlescrolls for imperial wizards and for example giving them one or two from their spells so they have say a buff a debuff a single target attack & an area of effect alongside the summoning would feel a bit better. The supporting units like the engine do have quite impressive effects, and having the magic of the race as a whole represented as that works to an extent, but it does make me considerably less interested in actually buying a slann. Which given that this basicly means I'm not interested in buying the supposed general of my troops is a bit odd. Ah well, since I'l only really be playing against my girlfriend we might make up some houserules to make magic more impressive, I've seen some floating around online.

    As for my second question, my question isn't so much "How do the seraphon deal with mobile ranged" as much as it is "How is anyone supposed to deal with high mobile high ranged". The prosecutors can run far & attack outside charging distance. By contrast the Terradons, which are even faster ranged troops but essentially fullfil the same niche, at least risk being charged if they want to fire their ranged stuff. Basicly I'm wondering what's supposed to keep someone from just running around in circles once they can attack from outside charging range, especially if their opponent doesn't have any range to retaliate with. E.g. the rule I mentioned in Lord of the rings which ensures achers get caught up at some point.
     
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  5. Bowser
    Slann

    Bowser Third Spawning

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    Summoning someone to within charge range or chameleon skinks are your best answers to that, or Lord Kroak. Though given his points cost may not be worth it. The oldblood on carno has a range of 18 inches as well. So it really comes down to what you want to bring and how to use it. They can't move shoot move, so you should be able to pin them down .
     
  6. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    What do you mean "they can't move shoot move"? From what I can find in the rulebook and online you're allowed to shoot whenever you want as long as you haven't run. But normal movement and even being in combat is okay.
     
  7. Killer Angel
    Carnasaur

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    The Slann can cast 3 spells. Barring named legendary characters, the other generic casters in AoS have 1 or 2 spells, so each one of your turn you cast shield, the missile and a summon, or you change the constellation.
    The Slann gives the constellation's effect, which is almost by itself a spell.
    A Slann as general can let a unit fly, giving also bonuses against shooting.
    The Slann got the arcane vassal rule: with a vassal you can cast at a very distant range without any risk of being countered... and usually your vassal can cast / unbind too (unless you're using a skink chief). Using a Starpriest as vassal, even with the rule of one, you can support your frontline troops with shield and starlight.
    The Slann is a strong unit.

    there's the movement phase and then the shooting phase; you move and then you shoot, you cannot shoot while moving. There are exceptions that let particular units shoot and then move, or that let you shoot during enemy's charges, but that's it.
     
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  8. Killer Angel
    Carnasaur

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    This is one of the reasons why you should always include in your army some shooting / high mobility units.
    Our salamanders / razordons may have a short shooting range (12"), but with move 8" they threaten 20".
    Summons let you threaen the whole battlefield.
    Chama skinks can pop everywhere.
    Or Shadowstrike starhost.

    Armies that lack in shooting and long range threats (ogres, beastmen and similar), usually have a strong movement and a huge charging range (destruction is really fast). Khorne and Tomb Kings can enter melee in turn 1 and hit HARD. Running around in circle is rarely a viable tactic.

    Now, regarding the specific question about terradons... yeah, to use them, you need to have them in charge's range of the enemy. So, you need to protect them and have the enemy feared bu the consequences of a charge. Here's an idea, but you can work around it and make it work also in different ways... for example, placing you terradons in range of some of your heavy shooting (bastiladon / salamanders) or in the range of a countercharge by your heavy meleer (carnosaur / stegadon / whatever).
     
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  9. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    I know, I meant that you can both move & shoot in your turn (in the appropriate phases) and in doing so can potentially run around your enemy in circles without him ever coming in range to retaliate. In contrast the teradons do risk retaliation because they are in charging range to do anything (even if they could potentially outrun enemies). Hence, I can see counters to using teradons that don't just boil down to "have better range or run faster". Whereas to the prosecutors I don't really see much of an option other than that. Worst case scenario against skirmishing teradons I could throw a large amount saurus wariors, and pray I reach them before all my guys die, against skirmishing prosecutors this would only work if I field so many warrios that the battlefield is so overcrowded that the only way to create distance is by running of the table. Yes running around in a circle won't happen frequently, but it's a possibility so I'm curious what is supposed to stop it from happening.

    Basicly, I don't see a real counter to prosecutors in certain situations, whereas for teradaons I can still see some options even if I'm stuck in the most unfavorable positions possible. Hence my confusion as to what exactly is supposed to stop an opponent from just running around in circles kiting your troops all day long in certain situations.

    As for the slann, yes he is by no means weak, but he is not the powerhouse magic user I expected. Basicly I expected magical artillery with potent buff/debuffs but got a guy who's main purpose is summoning reinforcements & needs help from others to truly shine through his vassals. I'l get him eventually, but I'm a bit less excited than I was. It doesn't help that the base spells are fairly uninteresting and available to every single caster, if the base spells where "pick two out of these 4 options: buff, debuff, AoE, single target nuke" it'd already feel better.

    On the note of casting through skink priests, can you create an entire relay of them, potentially reaching everywhere if you have a long enough chain of priests? Or are you only allowed to cast through 1 of them? The phrasing isn't entirely clear to me.
     
  10. Killer Angel
    Carnasaur

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    Ah, ok.
    Prosecutor and terradons act in different ways: terradons need to get closer to the enemy, so you need to grant them cover with other units.
    Prosecutors have a nice move and a good range, so that's why you need to have long range / mobility. You cannot counter a unit with good range and move, with melee units with poor move!
    When prosecutors shoot, they will be at 18" range you should have shooting too, with fast move (skinks and razordons are not slow), or long range (Bastiladon, stegadon), you could have fast meleers (knights), or simply chamaleon skinks (pop them within 16 in cover: you shoot harder than prosecutor and you have a better defence)
    If the question is: "how can a saurus-only-on-foot army counter Prosecutors?", then the answer is "you cannot".

    I can see your position. Yeah, the Slann is a support unit. A really strong one, but it's main role is to support and buff the army, via spells and constellations, not to resove things by itself. I can see how this can be disappointing.

    Nope, there's not a thing as the "bouncing vassal": it's just one skink hero that act as vassal. However, you still threaten a huge area: even without shenanigans ala balewind vortex, you can have 15" (vassal) + 18" (spell) + 8" (astrolith bearer) = 41".
    And if you're summoning some shooting unit, then you're effectively threatening more than 50".
     
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  11. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Meh, shame, I'd have expected there to be some way for just suarus on foot to at least attempt to fight back, even if it comes at heavy losses due to the advancing under fire. Ah well, I'l see how it turns out once we have more than a handfull of units fighting at once and can actually do some manouvering or summoning.

    As for the slann being support, is there any (not named) wizard/casting unit who isn't support focussed? Given the rather limited spellset I've seen so far it seems like most of them don't have the capability to snipe heroes or bombard large troop formations. They all seem to shine most by debuffing/buffing and their magcal offense is fairly minor.

    Shame the vassals can't bounce, seemed like it'd be a funny tactic to chain together vassals.Would be especially interesting if vassals had some empowering/depowering effect too depending on how "strong" your network is. Conversly would give the enemy some options (go for the slann, or break up the network of vassals)
     
  12. Crowsfoot
    OldBlood

    Crowsfoot Well-Known Member

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    Wizards and Hero's are all about supporting your army in AOS, if you think about it it makes sense, why would you send your best general to the front line when you have troops to do that.
     
  13. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    If you assume all of them are commanders then yes, but I'd assume you also have heroes that specialize in monster hunting, or assasinating opposing generals, or duellists, or wizards that specialize in being magical artillery. I'm not necesairly saying they'd be leading from the frontline. Just other roles than buff up allies/debuff enemies.
     
  14. Crowsfoot
    OldBlood

    Crowsfoot Well-Known Member

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    We have some strong monster hunters but our wizards are more support units, our assasains tend to be the chamo skinks.
     
  15. InfamousBeany
    Cold One

    InfamousBeany Well-Known Member

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    There are some pretty diverse Wizards in AoS, and are mostly catered to fit the theme of their army. With the Seraphon, there is a large emphasis on the theme of Control- our main non-named casters involve controlling light, time or fate, hence why they tend not to have damage focussed spells. If you're after aggressive, killy wizards then a good example would be the Lord of Change for Tzeentch daemons- it has a unique spell that can easily pump out 9 mortal wounds on a target, pretty brutal!

    In regards to your question about dealing with Prosecutors with only non-ranged ground based units- this is a tricky one. Without playing with points values, it can be hard to moderate how badly this can affect you, but to be honest Prosecutors aren't really very good. Just send off a single minimum size Saurus warrior unit to chase them and keep them away from your important units while you go about your business- if they want to fly over them they'll then be put at risk of being caught by your other units. Alternatively, obtain a Bastiladon and never have to worry about the pesky birdmen ever again, your choice.
     
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  16. Killer Angel
    Carnasaur

    Killer Angel Well-Known Member

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    You have the starter box, so you have plenty of ways to chase annoying Prosecutors; don't send your warriors to do a job that's not appropriate, use some fast knights while your bulk of troops takes control of the battlefield's center.

    Our heroes / generals made for melee are not casters. A Sunblood is an excellent general, a valid support for sauruses and a strong meleer.
    For casters that are also combat-oriented, you need to watch different armies and monsters as Tzeentch's Lord of Change, which, btw, can even snipe enemy's heroes with infernal gateway (even if in pure combat, it cannot truly compare to the ones of the other daemonic armies).
    For casters that can devastate large troop formations, you need to look at Destruction. IIRC, there are Orcs, with things as the Fist of Gork or the Foot of Gork, and Ogre-gutbusters with Voracious Maw.
     
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  17. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    I am aware the warriors are not appropriate for the job. I was just wondering what I'm supposed to do when I have nothing appropriate and need to make the best of an awefull situation. Apparently the anwser is "nothing you're mostly screwed now".

    Also, Knights aren't exactly fast. They only go 7", hell my skink starpriest outruns em. For caverly they seem kind of slow. That or skinks are insanely fast for infantry given that most models I've seen so far go about 4-6" if infantry.


    I didn't mean that I wanted my slann to wade into melee, just that all our caster generals/heroes seem to fullfill the same role. Namely that of support who mostly buffs/debuffs. But there's no sniper, no long range vs short range, no damage dealer, no artillery. Admittadly this is just going of the Age of sigmar rulebook for seraphon, so it might just be that the AoS roster is just too limited at the moment and that when you include the old roster you do get some casters that specialize in other aspects. But with just that book they all fullfill a the same role at their core.

    Ah well, it might just be I'm more used to fairly similar armies and not the asymmetrical factions you have in warhammer. Might take a while till i get used to that.
     
  18. tom ndege
    Carnasaur

    tom ndege Well-Known Member

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    I know what you mean when "complaining" about the Slann... But it's the same as with every unit... Read the description of the kroxigors... If you read it, you might think that a unit of them can kill the whole of khorn's blood bound... Look at the ststs and you realise... No, they can't.
    If the. Slann were as mighty as the description says, they would easily wipe out a chaos army on their own...
     
  19. Canas
    Ripperdactil

    Canas Well-Known Member

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    Mm, hilarious as that would be for a game or two I am fully aware that that wouldn't work. Mostly I'm just caught of guard, I wasn't expecting a summoning focussed army with wizards focussing on buffing & supporting. I expected to field my wizards mainly as magic artillery to make up for the lack of normal ranged troops & the big dinosaurs carrying artifacts like the engine of the gods to be the supporting units.

    Also I was expecting more of the magic system as a whole. I'm fairly new to warhammer, but I did know of the old schools of magic & how you could specialise in certain schools depending on race & such. I had hoped that system was still (largely) intact in AoS.
     
  20. tom ndege
    Carnasaur

    tom ndege Well-Known Member

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    Yes magic became quite simple in aos... ;) For me that's ok... I don't play very much and I like it quick and simple...

    And the specialisation of armies is a kind of step back... When I first played warhammer in 5th edition lizardmen were cc and magic heavy... Sallys and stegadons being the only thing that really shoot... Except the short bow skinks, whom I really miss... And so were all the armies all slightly different from each other... Like elves were shooting mages with a good cc and fast moving and dwarfs heavy shooters without magic and slow moving but also heavy armor...
    I quite like it somehow... It's still balanced but there is a huge difference in how armies work...
     

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