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 Mandrakes, revised

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Krovin-Rezh
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PostSubject: Mandrakes, revised   Tue May 24 2011, 09:28

Here are a series of changes to the much-maligned elites choice. Everything not listed can be assumed to remain unchanged.

Quote :
MANDRAKES...........16 points each

Wargear:
• Evil-looking blade (rending close combat weapon)

Character Options:
• You may replace the Nightfiend with the Kheradruakh the Decapitator.........+115 points

Special Rules:
• Hidden Deployment - Mandrakes may choose to deploy as three markers instead of as normal. These markers cannot be targeted by enemy units, but can move as a Mandrake would. At the start of any of your first three turns, you may replace one of these markers with a a Mandrake. Position the rest of the squad around that model as you would for deepstrike. They can then move, shoot, and assault as normal.
• Baleblast - Each unsaved wound from the Baleblast reduces the target's Leadership by 1 for their ensuing pinning test.
Now, I know assault grenades or ignoring difficult terrain completely would be more efficient, but it appears like GW wanted to use pinning as the method of maintaining initiaitve when charging through cover. That sounds much more fun and interesting, so I improved on their ability to pin units. You can also now infiltrate or outflank them with a pain token by replacing the Nightfiend. Speaking of our old buddy, Khery...

Quote :
KHERADRUAKH

Special Rules:
Shade Stalker - When Kheradruakh deploys on his own, he may deploy as a marker anywhere at least 1" away from enemy models. This marker may not be targeted by the enemy, and may move as if it were Kheradruakh. At the start of any of your first three turns, you may replace the marker with Kheradruakh, and he may move, shoot, and assault as normal as long as it is not the first turn (then go ahead with the evil chuckle).
That's more like it. Twisted Evil

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Last edited by Krovin-Rezh on Tue May 24 2011, 20:55; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : shade stalker - *at least* 1" away)
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Saintspirit
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Tue May 24 2011, 10:55

I like that they have rending weapons and that Kheradruakh (whose background is so, so good) is an upgrade character for them. Their deployment seems ok too, though I guess the description of the markers could be developed more. I am not sure however how Kheradruakh deploys on his own, if he is an upgrade character. Maybe if he costed more and allowed the other mandrakes to deploy in his way?

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shamroll wrote:
Dang! I was hoping Tyranids followed the Pokemon naming idea. A big Carnifex running around just yelling "Carnifex! Carni-Carnifex!" followed by a squad of termagants all saying "Termagant" to each other.
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Xelkireth
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Tue May 24 2011, 11:19

That is a great revision. I've got nothing to say outside of....












.....AWESOME!

Speaking of awesome, I think you just did this...
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Krovin-Rezh
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Tue May 24 2011, 20:50

Thanks Xelkireth! Very Happy

@Saintspirit
Kheradruakh is already a standalone HQ. You can take him as either choice: the original way using his new deployment, or as an upgrade character to buff a squad of Mandrakes. If you choose him as the upgrade, just refer to his unit entry in the HQ section, but use the upgrade cost instead (it deducts the cost of the Nightfiend).

As for the markers. They typically do not have any effect on the game outside of what is specifically indicated. In this case, they can only move. I would include running, since a Mandrake would be able to do that also, and use the MTC rule if they take a difficult terrain test. I imagine most people would use Mandrake/Decapitator models as markers, but you can use whatever you like. It's just a centerpoint to place your unit on like a deepstrike.

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Saintspirit
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Fri May 27 2011, 12:03

Ok, I think I get it now. Though, I think infiltrate is pretty nice too. What about if they had an upgraded form of infiltrate (like 12" if in LoS of the enemy or 6" if not)?

Another thing about the mandrakes that came into my mind was that perhaps their Baleblast should be better when they gained more pain tokens:
1 pain token - S4 Ap4
2 pain token - S5 Ap3
3 pain token - S6 Ap2/3

As few units ever gain 3 tokens I don't think it would be overpowered. Though of course, if this was the case they should be upgraded to be able to win in CC ( like that you gave them rending).

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shamroll wrote:
Dang! I was hoping Tyranids followed the Pokemon naming idea. A big Carnifex running around just yelling "Carnifex! Carni-Carnifex!" followed by a squad of termagants all saying "Termagant" to each other.
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Todo13
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Fri May 27 2011, 12:26

Awesome! I like how they can't be targeted until they attack, the rending and I think you should upgrade baleblast per paintoken
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Krovin-Rezh
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Sat May 28 2011, 10:16

Once the Mandrakes have two pain tokens, they are S5 I6 on the charge with FNP and rending. So they are pretty nasty at that point. Also note that rending is one of the more effective anti-tank rules, so Mandrakes would be able to fill that role if needed.

The Baleblast upgrades are a cool idea in theory. I've been wondering how to do something like that and balance it right. The high S, low AP of the shots are mitigated by the requirement for multiple pain tokens. However, from a game design perspective, I'm pretty sure I should be upping their points cost simply because they have a higher potential. Once they start hitting 18 pts, they start to become unwieldy for how they start out without all these bonuses. At least with rending at 16 pts, they are somewhat worthwhile in the early game.

What if they could upgrade their shots to re-roll hits and wounds, but at the price of one of their pain tokens? The token would be used as part of the shooting, so they could do that even if they had one token. But then they would lose their FNP unless their shots destroyed a unit. So there would be value in having at least two tokens. Anyway, just an interesting alternative I thought I'd throw out there.

Infiltrators is a nice option to have. I remember still wanting to have the option to use it with the Mandrakes back before our new codex. 12" infiltration is usually an automatic first turn charge, since Mandrakes have MTC and fleet. I feel like letting them do that all the time would subtract from the skill required to use the ability, but I like how it makes them seem like they are adept at stalking their prey. It may be plausible to extend their hidden deployment rule to make infiltration more fun. For instance, letting them deploy using infiltrators as usual, but then giving them a single turn of being hidden as an untargetable marker. That could also be interesting when combined with outflank.

So let me know what you guys think of these ideas.

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wildboar
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Tue Jun 21 2011, 21:11

I think Kheradruakh should be an IC that only Mandrakes can join. I think if he were an upgrade character then it has the potential to be a little too good. Although he is pricey to be fair.

I like the idea of Rending attacks, a decent and fluffy rule rather than a power weapon option that I have heard before.

I also think that Mandrakes should benefit from Kheradruakh's deployment option and that they can assault the turn they arrive in a similar fashion to the Ymgarl Stealers that the Nids have. This seems to fit the fluff 'emegrging from the shadows' a little more than simply Infiltrate. I also think it wouldnt be too strong an ability as Mandrakes can't exactly take a lot of punishment before they go down anyways.

Boar



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Foo
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Tue Jun 21 2011, 22:22

I once made a custom IC basically to make Mandrakes usable. She's pretty much a non-crap version of Kheradruakh:

Baleazara the Shadefiend.
150pts

Code:
WS BS S T W I A Ld Sv
6  5  5 3 2 6 4 9  -

Infantry, Unique.

Special Rules: Fleet, Night Vision, Power from Pain, Move Through Cover, Baleblast, Stealth

Shadefiend: Baleazara, like other Mandrakes, exists half in this world and half in the shadows. She has a 4+ invulnerable save.

Shadow Stepper: Through devotion to whatever dark powers lie beyond, she can use darkness and shadows as a gateway. She must be held in reserve, regardless of mission. Upon arrival, she must be placed in or within 2" of any piece of terrain or area cover. This counts as a move, though she can shoot, run and assault as normal.

The Cult of Darkness: As the head of a Mandrake cult, Baleazara is a creature of awe and respect in the shadows of Commoragh. She may take a unit of Mandrakes as a retinue at the regular point cost.

Altered Physique: Her skin tied tight with wires, Baleazara's movements remind her of the pain she brings to others. She begins the game with a pain token.

Wargear:
Nightblade: Balezara wields the Nightblade, a shadow-touched blade curling with inky black smoke. This is a power weapon with Rending.


Description
A despicable creature, even by Dark Eldar standards, Baleazara the Shadefiend's name is only spoken in whispers by the common denizens of Commoragh. Among the shadows and corners inhabited by the Mandrakes, however, her name is sometimes heard echoing in dark, empty spaces as though spoken by someone that has just left the room.

The origins of this dark creature are unknown. Some claim she is a broodmother, the first of the Dark Eldar to consort with unholy entities of the shadows, the sire from which all Mandrakes descend. Others speak of dark science, of arcane and forgotten secrets transmuting flesh into shadow, with Balezara as the first and most horrible creation.

What is known is that many of the mysterious and feared Mandrake hold Baleazara in reverence, gathering around her in a Cult of Darkness and doing her bidding, creeping in shadows, watching and listening, their cold breath upon the necks of the unwary, gathering souls for some unknown dread purpose.
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Local_Ork
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Tue Jun 21 2011, 22:50

Holy crap, she can kill tanks!

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Xelkireth
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Tue Jun 21 2011, 23:10

I would get rid of the retinue thing. 40k is branching way from them.
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Foo
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Wed Jun 22 2011, 02:50

It was either that or make her a Mandrake upgrade. Either way, really.
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Saintspirit
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes, revised   Wed Jun 22 2011, 07:26

Then I'd say upgrade, and that they can infiltrate in the same way as her (would make them much better indeed).

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shamroll wrote:
Dang! I was hoping Tyranids followed the Pokemon naming idea. A big Carnifex running around just yelling "Carnifex! Carni-Carnifex!" followed by a squad of termagants all saying "Termagant" to each other.
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