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About spooky_squirrel

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  • Birthday 03/21/1980

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  1. Angelica is useful for positioning and being a relatively cheap Practiced Production caddy. As such, similar to @Mrbedlam, I get more mileage out of her in other crews. If you're using things that are as fast as Coryphee and Ice Dancers, it's already extremely easy to over-extend. So for a crew as mobile as the one you've got listed there, she's not filling in any missing roles in your force and using her strengths might actually trap you into making mistakes. If you put together a less mobile crew for Colette, Angelica can become very helpful. She may have attack actions on her card, but in my experience she's hardly ever using them. A pair of Coryphee presents an interesting puzzle for you and your opponent. The longer they live, the more dangerous they are to your opponent--but they're still relatively fragile and the pair is a 14 stone investment. Every time I've ever held off on merging them into a Duet I've regretted it, so I'm in the habit of having a Duet by the end of the first activation of Turn 2. One of the other things I look at if I'm considering a pair of Coryphee is whether or not I'm bringing another pricey model, and whether or not my opponent is incentivized by the strat/schemes to kill them faster than they would normally. If I'm bringing a pair of Coryphee, I'm leaving behind other high-cost models. I know I'll always be out-activated by some lists, but I prefer to make sure that I'm not out-activated by everyone. I've found that being out-activated actually hurts my ability to score on schemes (and positioning strategies) because my opponent gets a handful of activations after I can no longer influence the board state to finalize their turn. So if I swap out the Coryphee for something slightly cheaper that won't be merging into a single activation or otherwise forcing me to conduct my turn(s) in a specific way or lose out on stone-to-work value, I'll think about bringing something else that's big. The Emissary is a solid piece for all of our masters, and can provide Colette & Company with a reusable ability buffer. With how scheme-savvy Colette can run, the Mech Rider might not find itself in the same role in her crew that she has in other crews. She can still drop scheme markers all over the place as a trigger on her attack, which lets you go other directions with Colette & Company. I find that if I'm using the Rider with Colette, I'm playing close to the rest of the crew in order to set up abilities or disrupt my opponent with her summons. Being able to summon in Arachnids, Fire Gamin, Metal Gamin, etc. (4 stone constructs) in response to what my opponent is doing or has on the table can be very useful. Whether it's the Emissary, Mech Rider, Coryphee Duet, or Howard Langston, one of the worst things that can happen when you put a lot of stones into one basket is Paralyze--so if you bring a big beater/utility, you might also want to bring along the Arcane Effigy or another form of condition removal. Due to my experiences with activation counts, I'm more inclined to bring a couple utility/beater models over a single expensive one. I've messed around with using Rail Workers, Large Steam Arachnids and other similar minion because they've got mechanics that enable them to spike their attacks and damage, allowing them to punch outside of their weight class (5/6 stone minions killing 8 stone enforcers in a single activation), and Union Miners block triggers when attacking. When I go this direction with my crew, Angelica finds her way into the crew because her start of game walk puts her where she needs to be, and her pushes mitigate the inherent slowness of the minions that will be doing the actual work.
  2. If you're setting up a piece trade, make sure you come out ahead on position. Canny opponents know that the Yasunori will get focused down and killed as soon as it is committed. It's a cruise missile that's going to have a specific target (or job). This means they're not planning on it being there after its attack run. The biggest thing that blocking out other models will do is make it harder for McCabe to recover any upgrades he's pitched to it--so it could help for the scenario where it gets all the toys and pushes from McCabe and Emissary. It's also important to remember that on the key turn that it attacks in, it's popping Recalled Training, which will help it defensively as well. If I send Yasunori out in the same way I've sent Howard Langston out (do as much damage as possible before dying), being on positives defensively means little-to-no stress on my hand, and potentially greater AP strain on the things attacking them. It's a win-win for me, because I've already written it off as dead. As mentioned early in the thread: Yasunori and Emissary eat up about half of my available hiring pool (regardless of master). If I'm also picking up quality minions (not just hounds), my activation count will be very low. If I'm playing McCabe and I decide to spend my four guardsman slots on 4 hounds, sure, that gets me to a total of 7 activations with enough stones left over for a single quality hire (cheap henchman maybe)--but those hounds might not get all the work done that I need to get done unless I can keep you focused on the Yasunori and Emissary. If I choose things other than hounds, I'm looking at having 6 activating models in Turn 1. If you put something into the Yasunori that can face-tank it for a turn, that lets you put your beaters and shooters into my crew and work on scoring your own points, quickly cutting down the things I need to keep alive to actually score points. If I'm at 6-8 activations and 3 of them are tied up in a single trick, every slow/paralyze/into the box I suffer is a major hit to my ability to score on the strat/schemes.
  3. Arcane Conflux and Sandeep is strong. Sandeep's big summon (Banasuva) is a minion and thus benefits from the generic upgrade (especially if he's activating at the end of the turn and cannot cheat due to no hand left or Gamin upgrade). His other summon options and some hiring options also benefit greatly (all Gamin are minions, Sanction Spellcasters are minions). Additional card draw is a bonus as well if you're keeping up with the Strategy.
  4. Reviewing what you have said you already have, I definitely agree with @Adran: play with what you have. Pick up some Gamin for summoning options, but since you're relatively new to Malifaux play with what you have. Sandeep with Upgrades will run you about 4 stones, Kudra loaded up another 9. You could play a melee-oriented Academic force with Shastar Vidiya Guards (and Sandeep has some stuff that interacts with their abilities), bringing you to a base of 29 stones with two of them, 31 if you give them both an upgrade (Well Rehearsed, Blade and Claw, Imbued Energies, BET). This leaves you 18 more stones for hires before you dig into Sandeep's cache. If you spend those stones on Gamin (2xFire, 2xPoison, for instance), you are looking at 8 activations and a mix of melee and shooting attacks, as well as having minions that can hand out conditions/cause damage even in death. You can instead spend those stones on a third Vidiya Guard with upgrade or the Sabertooth Cerberus (upgrade?), with potential of mixing in a Gamin hire or two. Oxfordian Mages will still be in the queue to pick up, as will things like the Emissary and the Mechanical Rider. These are models that can find a home in many other Arcanist crews, and can provide answers to questions you discover during the learning stages (described below). If you're at all curious about things like Joss and Steam Arachnids (hired or summoned by the Rider), those are in Ramos' box along with Howard Langston. A crew with Joss and/or Cerberus/Blessed, and a Poison Gamin or two can use the Poison Gamin to set up for Blade and Claw to move the slow moving Joss into position to get to the fight, or to get the more fragile beasty out of cover and directly into action (mitigating their inherent weaknesses). Take some time to play some fixed rulebook strat/scheme games (Turf War, A Line in the Sand, and a scheme that focuses on position or killing makes for a good starting point for mechanics and crew learning) and nail down the mechanics and complicated interactions that Sandeep's crew can have (every time I or one of the other Arcanist players introduce someone to Sandeep they end up feeling a little mystified at how we can have three models act during one model's activation, including summoning in another model). Keep a cheat sheet of his Beacon Abilities (laminate or put in a card sleeve so that you can mark off which ones you've used in a turn). Once you've done that and are versed in using the models you have, shift over to the strat/scheme set your local meta is using (core rules or GG2017) and start playing into drawn pools instead of fixed pools. As you do this, you'll start getting a sense for what's missing from your crew(s) for some schemes and where your weaknesses are (crew and player style) in various strategies/schemes and match ups.
  5. I've used mine with Ironsides, because of her Hand Picked Men aura. They can hit really hard and get some work done when they're on positives, and take a fair punch in return. In Sandeep their Academic keyword allows them to make use of more of his abilities, and they bring attack options that aren't tied up in being Ca actions. At 8 stones (plus upgrade if taken), they fill up a lot of space, however. One of these guards and an upgrade like Well Rehearsed, Imbued Energies, Bleeding Edge Tech (they're M&SU), or Blade and Claw will come in at 9 stones, but can potentially get some work done--you might find that they do a lot of work for you in some cases.
  6. Oiran are things I'm willing to pay the Merc tax on if I think I'm going to be making a lot of Wp duels, so if I can get them for the sticker price running TT, I'm more than happy to. The lack of suit in their Lure just means that it's not something I'm using as their primary justification for hiring, and it helps keep them better balanced than some of their contemporaries.
  7. Related to @benjoewoo's recommendation above: With the Oxfordian Mages as a core, having an M&SU Henchman (underlined examples below) supporting them in some way significantly assists them in handling Terror/Manipulative checks (Student Loans), so I'm often looking for excuses to bring someone who can fit that bill. This is one of the things that keeps me from using Myranda much myself--I get more mileage out of Amina Naidu using her bag of tricks; The Firestarter bolstering the Mages early, and being available to scheme run or even carry a Bleeding Edge Tech bomb into an enemy caster. Joss runs more expensive, but as mentioned above, he's a solid anvil, especially if you can hold off on committing him until he's needed. It's a 9 stone pitch for Myranda and IE, and if you can make it work to your benefit and keep board control and momentum, that's great. The people who use it around me use it for a cycled activation and to draw 4 more cards before it's time to activate Sandeep and go for the throat. I've faced off against players who weren't as well practiced, and they learned that Myranda is a little too fragile to leave out there where she can be targeted. I've gotten good mileage out of using those 9 stones for two more activations (Poison Gamin and Wind Gamin, for example) instead, putting my 50SS Sandeep scheme crew at 9 activations to start: Sandeep (Unaligned Sage, Commands, Arcane Reservoir) (max cache) Kudra (Recharge Soulstone, Free of Mortal Shackles) Oxfordian Mage (nemesis, shielding) Oxfordian Mage (doom, shielding) Oxfordian Mage (blood, shielding) Poison Gamin Wind Gamin Angelica (Practiced Production) Malifaux Raptor There are variants on this that I'll use depending on what I need, but this is a ready-to-roll into a strat/scheme pool that's going to need some markers down, and has enough options to play into marker/placement/interact schemes where my opponent sometimes feels a little bullied/overwhelmed by what's on my side of the board. In a pinch I can swap out Angelica and the Raptor for the Emissary, Amina+upgrade, or Joss (and with further massaging, get Warding Runes on him without touching my cache); this changes the role of the list from dropping scheme markers to position-bullying, control, or attrition (respectively). For scheme running purposes, you can also (for the same stone cost as Angelica and the Raptor) bring The Firestarter with Imbued Protection/Warding Runes and be reasonably sure that the psychotic little pyro will survive for Undercover Entourage, or be able to get into position to drop scheme markers or accuse models, all while being able to help my Mages make their Willpower checks early in game when momentum is being set. Since I'm already bringing Unaligned Sage, I could even swap the stage manager with the bird for a Sanctioned Spellcaster and a Union Miner, Performer, Rail Worker, or even a second Spellcaster (not recommended, all that Ca focus in the crew makes me very vulnerable to Sonnia, Mei Feng, Bleeding Edge Tech bombs, and the occasional opposing Sue). I know there are mixed reactions to Kudra's personal upgrade, but with the starting crew listed here, she's Ml 7 with 4 attacks on the charge. Summoned Ice Gamin for Commands the Wind gives her Armor +1 and positives. Summoned Fire Gamin (either remaining Gamin upgrade, depending on what I need Banasuva to do) gives her + in all duel totals (which includes the simple duel to (0) for a 6" place). I've also gotten good use out of the upgrade's (0) to autokill a Gamin (cycle summoned upgrades, explode Banasuva that's copied Deadly Reflex, deny Hunting Party, bury a Wind Gamin since my opponent wouldn't, etc.).
  8. In my local meta, some players have the first 28-29 stones of their Sandeep list essentially set: Sandeep's upgrades (4-5), Oxfordian trio (15), Myranda with IE (9). I haven't been doing this, but I have been doing similar things with the Oxfordian trio as the core. With Ice Gamin and Banasuva: copying Frozen Heart immediately makes Banasuva immune to horror duels and paralyze. If the Ice Gamin has already activated and used its (0) to put up the Bite of Winter aura, it also gives Banasuva +1 damage. Do this near the Commands the Wind Gamin for added enjoyment. Combinations like this are part of the reason for trying to have good activation control on the attack turn--if your opponent's done activating and Sandeep has not yet gone, you get the Gamin combination you want, uninterrupted for the first turn it's on the table.
  9. Myranda's shapeshift options depend on what you're planning on doing with shapeshift. Typically in my meta the answer all of us Arcanist players have to that question is 'kill stuff', which prompts us to bring out Cerberus or Blessed/Luther (as @bertmac mentioned). We also tend to lean towards using Command Sandeep, and bringing in something like the Emissary. This gives us multiple angles of attack, as well as Myranda becoming something that can either hunt scheme runners or be a sucker punch on the flank where Sandeep and the Emissary aren't. Which one we use depends on what our opponent has on the table. Outside of those two models, generally the idea is to trade up, whether in stone cost or functionality. That is, make sure that what you're gaining is worth at least what you're losing. In a card-dependent crew, adding Imbued Energies to her gets us 4 cards for the effort as well, which makes the trade much sweeter. Whether or not you bring the Emissary depends on what you're planning on doing. The Arcane Conflux provides an aura that greatly assists minions, but you could pay for another upgrade if you're not planning on using anything that the generic 0 cost Emissary upgrade. The Valedictorian is an interesting piece, being a flying Henchman with the ability to (0) to turn off triggers and a Terrifying ability to pull cards from your opponent. She doesn't do what Kudra does, but if you're not sure how you would use her, you might leave her box on the shelf while you flesh out other options. The Mechanical Rider can summon in more 4 stone Gamin (constructs), but she can summon in other things as well, such as Steam Arachnids. One of the other things to consider is that Sandeep is hard-capped at three Gamin summoned, and his Gamin trade something that they do for added ability. The Rider's summons come in damaged, but do not sacrifice anything to provide a utility ability. I will often consider bringing the Rider as a scheme runner if the strat/scheme pool does not call for early killing/positioning, since her abilities come into play starting Turn 2, fully dialed in Turn 3. I would strongly recommend picking up the Oxfordian Mage box, or the Troubleshooters box (for Ironsides, Mouse, The Captain, and the three Mages). Sandeep's Beacon ability calls for minions and academics, and if you take Unaligned Sage, they get a lot of help (no LOS required, Sandeep can help them furious cast without randomizing). This is also the upgrade that gives you the option of bringing in Sanctioned Spellcasters and The Valedictorian. Sanctioned Spellcasters are interesting. Their (0) effectively disables opposing control that relies on pushes, and being minions, they'll benefit from the Arcane Conflux. You can also burn nearby Master/Henchman AP to have them take additional actions through their Collar. The Arcane Effigy brings condition removal, which can help clean up things like Slow or Paralyze. Its (0) might not see much use until Sandeep is ready to dive into combat; hopefully the Effigy has been able to keep up with Sandeep. If I have 4 stones to spend, it's either on this guy or a Gamin that's going to be acting as a potential anchor for Banasuva. Angelica can be good into the right strat/scheme pool. She makes for a discount Practiced Production caddy, moves at the start of the game, and can help push models into position for later activations. I know that there are people who will try to sell the idea of spending 2 more stones and getting Cassandra as the PP caddy, but as @benjoewoo mentioned, you'll want to take into consideration your own meta, playstyle, and what you're finding you need out of a potential Showgirl with an upgrade in your crew.
  10. I think Carlos is going to see more table time from me. Cassandra's good at what she does, but I feel like that Southern Hospitality forces you to activate her early to make it harder to stop her from getting work done, and I'm steadily becoming less and less a fan of having my order of activations dictated to me (which is why I'm not a huge fan of Ramos' Spider Factory). At 10 Stones, Carlos with Stunt Double and Practiced Production comes in at the same stone cost as Cassandra with Recharge Soulstone and Practiced Production, with the added bonus that his defensive tech doesn't care about activation sequence (get armor +1 from burning on initiative flip). The Union Miner can, in a pinch, turn that up to Armor +2 if needed, or Carlos can do it himself as a (0). Just don't do this into Sonnia. Or an Arcanist player running Rail Workers. Of course, I'm not necessarily reaching for Colette into those match ups.
  11. Mei Feng versus shoot/cast heavy crews can be a real punishment--but your opponent will hopefully learn to incorporate other aspects. She's not the only one that can create these problems, after all.
  12. Last time I ran two Performers and Mannequins was when I first had Colette's box assembled and I wanted to see what her crew could do. If I were to restrict my crew selection down again, I could see running a pair of Performers with a pair of Mannequins in an interact-heavy scheme pool that's under a Strategy like Collect the Bounty--mainly because they would be limiting Bounty Points while scheming, and if they die, that Precious ability will allow me to get more work done. The downside is that the Show on Ice thing I described on page 13 of this thread is much more killy and is mostly Minions, meaning it works better into Collect the Bounty than a more passive control crew would. That being said, with Kudra and the Scorpius, A Sip of Wine becomes more interesting. Carlos and Cassandra would both benefit strongly from Precious (so would the Coryphee Duet, but that's getting far too top heavy for Collect the Bounty). Colette using Death Defying to a Performer to gain Reactivate and heal is cold-blooded, but it lets Colette get a lot more work done while living to see another day.
  13. Silent Ones, Ice Dancers, and Ice Gamin are all Minions. Luther (Blessed of December) is the Enforcer. Luther brings Subzero. Typically I'll have Ice Dancer, Ice Gamin, and Luther maneuver for a flank, with Bite of Winter and Subzero making them nasty in close combat on attack and defense. With the Work the Crowd (0), the dancers don't need to be inside Colette's bubble to drop a scheme marker as a (0), and with their momentum, I can push them to jam deeper, or break away to support Ice Mirror shenanigans from the Silent One(s). The Silent One(s) will play the part of mini-Raspies that can (0) to drop a scheme marker, eat doves for positives on damage, and benefit from both Prompt and All Together Now and the forward maneuvering Ice Dancers, Luther, and midfield Ice Gamin to put some serious pain out out of activation. I've flat-footed some opponents with it, especially since the Ice Dancer, Luther, and Silent Ones all spike damage hard. It was something I started playing with under the Collect the Bounty constraint of limiting bounty value while maintaining lethality. [edit] If you squeeze in Arcane Conflux with the Emissary, the added positives on the attack increase the effectiveness of the minions. It would likely involve swapping out with Luther/Blessed.
  14. I'm thinking that the Rail Golem would work wonders with some support from a couple Steam Arachnids reducing the Df of targets, which takes my crew concept in a different direction than Colette normally goes for me*. Carlos burning can be really rewarding, but also really risky. If I burn my hand too fast (or my opponent burns it for me), Burning +6 is going to be a real problem. Conservative hand use can help a lot and I love having uses for every card in my hand, even if it's "discard to X". I'm a fan of starving trolls out, but I'm concerned about prospective Colette players running into the combined effect of people whinging about the cuddle on one side and people saying "git gud" on the other. I'm in the camp that likes the change because I believe that it is good for the health of the game (does not necessarily mean good for Colette), and that it will help people that want to play Colette learn more nuanced ways to play her (and Malifaux in general). I realize that it may make me sound like I'm saying "git gud", but I'm offering up things that I've used in game that have scored me VP and given me the ability to shift momentum in my favor. * Of course, Colette's crew concept has shifted to a Show on Ice variant for me, so maybe it's not too much of a stretch to have the Animatronics Incorporated concept congeal. On the Doves question: Envy with positives on damage. I will never have all three doves on the table for any length of time because of things like that.
  15. Before you accuse others of not reading, ensure that you've read what has been said as well. I've stated, in this thread, that you can use a Union Miner to set up All Together Now in one activation. Here's how you do it, which almost completely ignores the 4" limitation you're looking at here: Union Miner is a Minion, so if it is with 8" and LOS of Colette, it can interact as a (0) to drop its first Scheme Marker. Then it uses False Claim twice, putting four more scheme markers on the table anywhere within 3" of the Miner. There are now five scheme markers on the table from one activation. If you're worried that your opponent will interfere, Colette goes next, calls All Together Now. Miner discards the scheme marker it dropped as a (0) and throws two more markers out anywhere within 3", leaving 6 markers available for the rest of the crew to use for an AP. Two activations into Turn 1 and Colette's pulled 3AP out of a Union Miner, and 1AP each out of up to 6 more models, and still has an AP left to do something like summon a dove, and can (0) to drop a scheme marker. Wicked Vines does different work than All Together Now. It targets a single model and takes away their ability to walk/charge while it's in play. It's a condition, and can be ignored by things that ignore conditions and removed similarly. Comparing it to an AP multiplier is apples and oranges. Carlos and a Union Miner, certainly. I'm not sure I want to drop a Rail Golem in, since the space it occupies has other options that work better with Colette in general or otherwise don't need support. Carlos is amusingly hard to kill, especially if you get his burning up nice and high and can keep a card in hand for his Stunt Double ability.