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Otylia

Oxfordian Mages

44 posts in this topic

I was wondering what people's thoughts were on the mages and playing them with other crews.

To me they sound like a really interesting play dynamic and sound like they're diverse enough to run well with any crew... but I don't hear much talk/excitement about them, so I'm wondering what other people think.

Specifically I'd be considering them with Raspy or Kaeris.

 

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I want them for my Kaeris crew. They will be really good with her because all the burning :D

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The runes are awesome, but only henchman and Ironside can get there perks, sorry Kaeris and Raspy.

I feel those two masters have a model that sort of fills the same role, Kaeris has gunsmiths and Raspy has silent ones.

I see no real issues with them and Kaeris, they can give fire if you wish or they can do any number of other triggers and she + Firestarter are both S&MU. They are a bit slower than a gunsmith and more squishy.

For Raspy... They do nothing with frozen heart so I like the silent one more. Now if the did not have ice mirror that would make it a toss up, but they do and Raspy crew tends to have 2-3 models worth casting through so I see little reason not to use silent ones instead. If you did a non frozen heart build for Raspy or wanted a small group that act separately from her then the mages could work well.

 

As you can tell from my name, I had/have for a particular model in the faction and that Raspy now loves even more sense it gained frozen heart. I really need to play her more.... o well, may be latter.

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Yeah I was wondering if it was because there were too many other choices to fill the same role in other crews.... and I hadn't thought about the runes not conveying.

I won't rule them out entirely with the burning though :) 

Thanks!

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A large part of it is probably availability I have considered running them in some crews but don't have models.

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They are also "best" run in pairs and close to each other. Which might cause you to increase the ss spent in that role.

 

*note best is in "" because it is an opinion that seems to be common at least in my area. As I am not currently running them I can not speak on this.

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I haven't had a ton of experience with them but I think i'd likely run one or two. Three just seems like a lot of points tied up on a relatively static model. One is completely viable if you take it with Nemesis ward upgrade as it no longer needs to rely on other academics for its triggers. Unfortunately nemesis has the worst warding rune ability though.

 

Sometimes I'll actually run blood ward on a single mage too. You end up sacrificing a bit of utility, but gain some flexibility in melee and in my opinion also the best of the warding rune abilities. 

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Definitely levitating Andy Warhol, and probably the angry one with burning hands because that's the one that makes the most "sense" to carry Blood Ward...

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Assuming that three is a bit much, the really difficult question might be which 2 of the three models will people choose to deploy !

Tintin with the big lump of magic, Levitating Andy Warhol or the angry one with burning hands - http://www.madaxeman.com/Malifaux/Malifaux_Ironsides_Crew.php

Nice post, I enjoy your style of battle reports so was nice to see the thoughts on the assembly and painting.

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The one with the Tintin hair is the only obviously female one so I'd definitely use that one :D and probably burning hands one.

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I proxied them ages ago and use them regularly, and I've found most of the above good advice, I'd round it up by saying- 

 

  • They work best in tight pairs, or if soloing with nemesis ward.
  • (Don't forget Friekorps librarians are also academics, so can replace a mage for the extra tome if you hire one in as a merc).
  • (Also don't forget the nearby academics don't have to be friendly, I've stolen tomes from opposing transmortis crews in the past, but if they're that close things have probably got a bit hairy already).
  • Blood ward is immense, as it allows them to cast Elemental Bolt in Melee they can potentially make 4 melee attacks, all at CA6, all with the possibility of triggers on Tomes. very tasty against the bigger spirits like huggy and the Nothing Beast. The immunity to enemy conditions speaks for itself, is Distract or cursed object in the pool? Making your Henchmen and master immune to them is great. I'll usually consider taking it solo vs Ressers, but give it academic back up otherwise. 
  • Nemesis ward is great solo, it's buff may seem a little weak compared to the others buffs, but it can be pretty good. I tend to take it if assassinate is in play and I'm playing outcasts, (or Lady J if I know the master) as Ironsides is a bit squishy when the Viks are around. it's also the easiest way to get access to elemental strikes 'Death touch' ability, nobody likes insta-death or card reduction abilities.
  • Doom ward tends to get overlooked in the shadow of it's brothers, but Blink makes it the most survivable mage by far, and Regeneration is never to be sniffed at. that said I'm usually throwing these chaps around in the backfield so Doom is the third man a lot of the time. Not particularly stunning at any schemes or strategies, I'll hire Doom Mage much more rarely than the others.
  • Three can be amazingly functional, but it will cost you 18ss, It helps if you consider that any model with warding runes gains three extra upgrades when in range. together they can be quite a threat, (especially when you realise Nemesis Death Touch is built in at this point) so expect your opponent to aim something killjoy equivalent at them early on. 
  • Student Loans makes them good against Belles and other Lures, but also gives them a good chance of pushing through most horror duels, worth keeping them in LoS for that upgrade.
  • The Arcane shield is only one point less damage, but it can make a big difference if you are sending the mages against scheme runners who aren't throwing out big damage, I've found flanking them and activating late in the turn gets the best from the shield.

When looking at the Elemental Bolt's triggers, it's important to not get too sucked in to one trigger, yes burning is great (esp with Kaeris or Mei Feng around), but sometimes an extra 2/4/6" push can keep another model alive, or stop a VP being claimed. Ignoring armour is better than burning if they have armour 2 or more, and with Slow they can really disrupt enemy plans. 

 

Elemental strikes triggers are much more straightforward- you'll usually be wanting the soulstone (esp with Ironsides or Mei as they hammer though them) and any opportunity to Death Touch should be taken, I very rarely go for flaming strike myself, as the extra damage isn't comparable to the other two unless an enemy is close to death already.

 

They work well with Gunsmiths, Librarians, and Silent ones, They also benefit from pushes to move them into position from the captain, mouse etc.

 

Masters wise any M&SU can get great mileage from them, whereas Marcus and Raspy won't find them as useful. Looking forward to seeing what viciousness I can pull with a Colette/mage combo, I'm sure there's something nasty there if I look hard enough.

 

just my thoughts, hope they help:)

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Putting them together right now and I find they look a bit odd on the 40mm bases. It seems a bit big for normal-sized non-melee folks. I'm definitely looking forward to trying them out. 

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  • The immunity to enemy conditions speaks for itself, is Distract or cursed object in the pool? Making your Henchmen and master immune to them is great. 

 

That's real filth  - Congratulations Sir! 

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Hi there!

As i heard, in the ripples of fate book there will be an upgrade that makes the mages even more worth their money, as i heard they will be cheaper, and get some defensive stuff, but only if they are all hired. Any details of this upgrade card?

Thanks!

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1 hour ago, King of Draconis said:

Hi there!

As i heard, in the ripples of fate book there will be an upgrade that makes the mages even more worth their money, as i heard they will be cheaper, and get some defensive stuff, but only if they are all hired. Any details of this upgrade card?

Thanks!

It's 0 cost and doesn't take a slot. It can be discarded for some damage reduction. If you have 3 mages they cost 1 SS less each.

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On 6/16/2015 at 7:48 PM, Trample said:

Putting them together right now and I find they look a bit odd on the 40mm bases. It seems a bit big for normal-sized non-melee folks. I'm definitely looking forward to trying them out. 

I found that the base sizes are nice for two things: putting them in foam for transport, and drawing line of sight for Warding Runes. Especially when using Ironsides to be an AP black hole for your opponent, it's important to note that the pulse and aura icons both require line of sight. The putting in foam bit is just nice, because the base protects the dynamic poses better than some of the other models in the Arcanist line up.

On 6/16/2015 at 8:46 AM, Ampers&nd said:

When looking at the Elemental Bolt's triggers, it's important to not get too sucked in to one trigger, yes burning is great (esp with Kaeris or Mei Feng around), but sometimes an extra 2/4/6" push can keep another model alive, or stop a VP being claimed. Ignoring armour is better than burning if they have armour 2 or more, and with Slow they can really disrupt enemy plans. 

They work well with Gunsmiths, Librarians, and Silent ones, They also benefit from pushes to move them into position from the captain, mouse etc.

Masters wise any M&SU can get great mileage from them, whereas Marcus and Raspy won't find them as useful. Looking forward to seeing what viciousness I can pull with a Colette/mage combo, I'm sure there's something nasty there if I look hard enough.

Excellent advice in here (snipped down to some highlights). I've found that I end up targeting my own models and taking the push trigger (HPM/Ironsides) to move them up. With Kaeris and Mei I could see getting some mileage out of the push trigger as well the burning. Anti-armor depends on whether or not my opponent has armor, and I'm typically shooting at things that already activated (later turn mage activation) so handing out slow isn't high on my priorities. Since all the triggers are baked in if you're camped near other Academics (or packing the Nemesis Ward), you can pick your tool on the fly, which is really handy.

I'm not sure how much use Colette might get, Prompting and Understudy (Cassandra) will get more work out of them, but that's assuming those aren't being used to get more work out of something else (including Cassandra herself). Counterspell on Cassandra is nice by itself; giving her the other bonuses would be amazing, but she's so stupendously mobile that she might not be within the Ward range if she's doing her various jobs.

On 6/12/2015 at 7:33 AM, D_acolyte said:

They are also "best" run in pairs and close to each other. Which might cause you to increase the ss spent in that role.

*note best is in "" because it is an opinion that seems to be common at least in my area. As I am not currently running them I can not speak on this.

That's an opinion that's pretty common in my area as well. They're 6SS (5SS if you buy 3 and take Temporary Shielding) each on an enforcer that doesn't move very quickly on its own. As with any other model, you want to look at your strats and schemes before committing a significant portion of your [crew] to a family of models, as well as your opponent's faction.

Those caveats aside, I've noticed that in my own play experience that some models I might not want/need more than 1-2 of, because I need to have the right tools for all the jobs I'm trying to do. Every time I've skewed heavy one way or another, I end up having to work really hard just to get 4-5 out of 10 VP against crews that are hired to do their jobs as fast as possible and interfere with mine as much as possible. I learned the hard way that 14 points between two gunsmiths didn't help if I wasn't getting the cards I needed to get them Fast before they activate, because that's 14 points only getting me a total of 4AP. So it ends up being an opinion I tend to agree with. Committing 15 points for 3 mages is easier to consider (far easier than 18 for 3), between the furious casting, the (0) action, and their ability to support each other.

On 6/12/2015 at 6:58 AM, Otylia said:

I was wondering what people's thoughts were on the mages and playing them with other crews.

To me they sound like a really interesting play dynamic and sound like they're diverse enough to run well with any crew... but I don't hear much talk/excitement about them, so I'm wondering what other people think.

Specifically I'd be considering them with Raspy or Kaeris.

Outside of Ironsides' crew, they're a shoe-in for Sandeep. For Kaeris I could see bringing 1-2 if you don't need those 6/12SS (not including the upgrade slot on the Henchman) spent elsewhere to use their triggers to do things like set things on fire or push things around in support of other things you're looking to do. If you're using a static support Henchman who's going to be pushing up into position and taking care of business in the middle of the board, the Warding Runes can help keep them there. Just note that using them early in the turn to give out burning or to push models into place means that they don't get to use their normal arcane shielding to reduce damage.

My own instinct with Kaeris is to bring minions that will work off of what she does (i.e. Large Arachnids in Grab and Drop to get the (0) focus started, Gunsmith(s) to work off of Halo burns, Rail Workers to act as a front line and potentially feed off of the burning). This comes from trying to follow the generic (and accurate) advice of picking models that will get the job(s) done.

I just finished building a proxy for our lawyer, Amina (from the TTB female box), who also happens to be a Henchman and an Academic (which means she boosts them and can take Warding Runes) and will be thinking of ways to fit her into the way I run my crews.

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I have used them with Colette now that you can field 3 for 5. The prompt pushes make them much more agile. Also, Cassandra loves to understudy them.  Its very fun to spend their first turn walk, scheme marker or walk, walk, prompt to scheme marker. Then on turn 2, let them go off with all together now and furious casting. Its like fireworks.

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20 hours ago, spooky_squirrel said:

For Kaeris I could see bringing 1-2

I think that the days of considering 2 mages is over. Lots of reasons to consider a single mage, but after you buy the second mage, it's only 3 SS for the third, and it's tough to find that kind of value in Malifaux for 3SS. 

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25 minutes ago, decker_cky said:

I think that the days of considering 2 mages is over. Lots of reasons to consider a single mage, but after you buy the second mage, it's only 3 SS for the third, and it's tough to find that kind of value in Malifaux for 3SS. 

This

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Fair point. I usually find myself looking at those 3 points for upgrades or bolstering choices related to the schemes, because sometimes that third mage isn't helping me do what I need to do (middle back support/"gun"line isn't guarding a stash or counting towards extraction, forward positioning is going to result in my popping the temporary shielding and hoping that my opponent runs out of activations so that I get at least one more turn of control/burn out of them). It comes down to "if I have 3 more points, I can use X instead of Y, and give Z Imbued Energies. I like support options, but the name of the game is scheme completion and scoring off of the strategy.

If I cannot find the three points for a third mage and be happy with my crew for the s+s pool, I may drop down to a single mage and take advantage of the fact I'm looking at more hiring flexibility, but I may still have use for that second mage (i.e. immunity to enemy conditions/pulse damage and regen for a frontline tank like Joss, whose reactivation will put him above the HtK threshold again). It all depends on who I'm playing into what s+s and opponent faction.

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When paying 3SS for a mage, you can still get amazing value using it our of its normal role. For example, run the blood mage as a flexible supporting melee model. The mages are actually really good support/disruption pieces with all the pushes they can cause, so are underrated in their scheming ability. 

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What Ward do people bring when they do a single Oxfordian Mage?  I typically bring the Nemesis Ward so it has access to all its ranged triggers on all attacks, but I'm thinking if I do single Mage with Sandeep I might do Blood for the option of doing work in melee too.  I find I basically never bring the Doom Ward, which I know is silly because that's just leaving behind Regen +1 but I like the other buffs the Mages get more.

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I often bring Blood with a single mage in Ironsides to provide immunity to pulses and conditions. It makes the 1SS upgrade on her and Henchman of choice even better.

 

My experiences with running them in Ironsides' crew has weened me off of bringing all three all of the time, often because they're not helping with LYM/CBT type schemes that require moving forward faster, and they have not been reliable enough at other schemes that I've played into that I would feel a nasty drop in the over all crew effectiveness swapping one out for a soulstone miner or a rail worker (with change for something else to get a boost) for example.

With Temporary Shielding the cost dynamic has changed, 3 points for the better in a crew based on the Troubleshooters box, but the fact that they're marginally harder to kill with it doesn't make up for the fact I'm burning a lot of activations to get them up the field to do frontline work that they're not that good at.

When my non-Blood Ward mages get engaged by something with a decent Ml, my already tight number of activations becomes overworked trying to get those mages to where they can contribute. My usual opponents have learned that when I drop Ironsides in, they want their fastest movers to tie up my support mages and keep them busy doing everything they're not intended to. If I have to push them up to do the work that would be better done with a metal gamin, rail worker, large or small spider, they're not doing the job I hired them for and that 3 point discount has become a liability instead of an asset. If I have to use the Blood Ward mage to push the other two out of close combat, I'm burning up his/her entire activation and letting my opponent get another activation in to tie at least one of them up again, without actually advancing my scheme or strategy play.

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