Jump to content
Cashewmellow

Rolling Over to Thunders - How to Start?

Recommended Posts

Greetings Thunderers,

Been a dedicated NB player since I picked up the game (start of wave 2), but have decided I want a change of scenery so to speak.

Since I already have Lynch and his thematic crew, who are quite capable at killing, I was looking to get a more supporty master to balance it out, amd have decided to give Shenlong a try.

So basically, I was thinking over picking up:

-Temple of the Dawn box

- 10T Bros

-Samurai or Katanaka Snipers

-Low or Wandering River Monks

Is this a decent starting point? Are there any obvious roles that I'm missing across the two crews? Which of the last models would you suggest and why?

Thanks in advance, and looking forward to bringing the Thunder! 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This looks like a decent starting point, but it's lacking in one thing: damage potential. Right now pretty much every Thunders crew uses Yasunori. He costs as much as a master box, but he's highly recommended. If you really just want to test out the faction, I suggest you proxy him to get a feel on whether or not you like running him.

Currently your list has almost exclusively ranged damage. Don't get me wrong, Katanaka Snipers on Turn 1 with a double focussed shot buffed by Sensei Yu is a fearsome sight to behold. Sh5 (+1 from Yu focus bonus) means you are hitting the attack with :+flip:+flip and damage with :+flip which means you will generally be hitting and able to cheat. This does require good positioning and a rather open map to work out. However you have no melee threat. Shenlong's damage track is not really that great and neither is Yu's. Both are more used as support pieces that can go in if you see an opening. 

 

My most run damage dealers in a Shenlong crew are Yasunori and the Emissary. Since you're just starting out, proxy them. If you don't want to proxy them, it really depends on what type of game you are trying to play. Both my Lynch crew and my Shenlong crew generally run both these as the combination is just sweet. Izamu could be used as a cheaper alternative.

 

Another recommended model would generally be Terracotta Warrior, but he requires a big Enforcer/Minion that needs protecting. Hence again my suggestion for Yasunori and the Emissary.

 

 

 

If you really just want to keep it basic, all you need more is Terracotta Warrior and Izamu to really open up the playstyles. Your starting selection looks solid. I would not recommend the Wandering River Monk right now as we don't generally need those guys. With Wandering River Style (on Shenlong or Yu) you can already move markers quite a bit and we have tools to get other, better models in position. Neverborn use Silurids, but they don't have the mobility the Thunders have.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, whodares said:

Another recommended model would generally be Terracotta Warrior, but he requires a big Enforcer/Minion that needs protecting.

This leads me onto another question, how does Mr Graves hold up in 10T? He makes it into most of my NB lists for a nice balance of melee presence and utility, just wandering how he compares, especially since I'm lacking some close range damage. 

Are the Samurai in reliable in a similar role? Thinking with the built in armour ignoring and decent triggers with the Favour of Heaven for a speed buff.

Thanks for the advice so far though, will definitlely proxy Yas and the Emmissary in for some games

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like using the Samurai with Lynch as card flippers. The damage spread and triggers are decent and they flip a ton of cards for Lynch to pick up Aces from. I've yet to really utilize them with Shenlong as I usually want to take other things. My last game with Lynch used Graves/Samurai to get them up the board and shoot into a crowd of my opponents models. Aside from the copious flips, Snipers seem like the better ranged option.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Need a min 3 beater. Yas, izamu, Kang, graves, katanaka boss, ama are all ones I look at to fill this role.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For beaters, it is important to consider how you deal with defensive abilities.

Hard/impossible to wound is best dealt with high min damage. Common in ressers, Yamaziko, Izamu, and Yasunori all fill this role and have the wp/abilities to bypass horror duels. The lone Swordsman has two triggers that also bypass this although with min 2 he struggles without them.

Armor is best dealt with by either hitting high, piercing, or death by a thousand cuts. Samurai pierce is great, Kang hard worker works wonders, Yasunori/Izamu have the raw power to still work but aren't very cost efficient for armor 2+, Katanaka Crime Boss and Sniper can work around it through "cannot be reduced" and cross map 5 damage severe.

Burst damage is helpful against healers such as anything with call unto chi and is where Ten Thunders Shines, as recalled training turn Izamu/Lone Swordsman/Yasunori/*insert master* can basically delete almost any model in the game.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Cashewmellow said:

This leads me onto another question, how does Mr Graves hold up in 10T? He makes it into most of my NB lists for a nice balance of melee presence and utility, just wandering how he compares, especially since I'm lacking some close range damage. 

Are the Samurai in reliable in a similar role? Thinking with the built in armour ignoring and decent triggers with the Favour of Heaven for a speed buff.

Thanks for the advice so far though, will definitlely proxy Yas and the Emmissary in for some games

The rest has been pretty accurate so far.

I've never used Samurai, I just can't find any room for them in my lists. Yasunori already takes a big chunk (13-14 stones) which means they suddenly become rather expensive. I agree with @Hermit that they can be used as card flippers for Lynch. I would run them with Jigoku though just to make sure their own attack doesn't backfire on them.

 

@Dr Mittens gave you a nice summary already of available options, so I'll just talk about your last question: Mr Graves.

To start off: yes, he can work in Thunders. His slow walk is offset by pushes from either Shenlong, Yu or the Emissary which means he spends more time hitting people with his lamp. In my Lynch crew, I ALWAYS run Mr Tannen. Cheating second while forcing the opponent to discard a card first is such a powerful combination. This also means this variation of Lynch could run Graves with the Tannen synergy, which could be powerful if you can get Tannen his permanent manipulative.

For Shenlong he's more like a budget beater. His low defense makes keeping him alive rather difficult, even with the heals from Shenlong and/or Yu. I would prefer not to run him inthere because there are many better options available such as Izamu, Yasunori, Swordsman, ... Generally I just run Yasunori and the Emissary though, which already gives Shenlong enough punching power to make your opponent think twice. This doesn't mean Graves is bad per se, it's just that he is outclassed by other models for what your crew is trying to do. Run him if you like, he works. Just don't expect to win serious tournaments with him, unless you can figure out some niche build. :)

 

 

For your first game, I strangely enough recommend you to run with Graves. The reasoning for this is that you already know this model's inner workings, which grants you more freedom in learning the rest of the crew. Once you figure out the Style switching with Shenlong and Yu and when to swap to which Style, you can check out Yasunori. Otherwise his crew can become overwhelming rather fast.

 

I personally found Shenlong to be a high learning requirement master as he can just do so much at thesame time it becomes overwhelming. He was my first master, which was in hindsight not such a great idea. You already have experience with Neverborn, so for you it will be fine. That still doesn't mean figuring out his playstyle will be easy. Starting with Shenlong is easy, using him and his support models optimally is very, very hard.

 

 

Perhaps a funny note: I've been a rather dedicated Thunders player until about a year ago where I've been exploring other factions. I've been collecting some Neverborn and Outcasts, which means you're doing the reverse of what I've been doing :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As to your intial post and your inquiry of Low or Wandering River Monks, I would go with Low River Monks. They're really great for their cost and with the upgrade they can hand out healing and scheme markers. I like Wandering River Monks and picked them up myself early on but for 7 stones in a faction already low on activations, you generally need more than a scheme runner. Having the 10T Brothers should be plenty for your scheme running needs with their mobility and versatility. Low River Monks are great utility and when you pick up the Shadow Emissary eventually can be used to draw 3 cards per turn with the Emissary/Shenlong.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the comments guys!

@whodares I planned to use Graves for exactly that sort of thing while settling in (as a familiar model), though I'm gathering that another min 3 beater will be needed.

Does anyone here have any experience with the Crime Bosses? The card draw seems really nice for both Lynch and Shen, and a lack of anti armour is largely what's kept me divided between the Samurai and Snipers. Will probably try and borrow my mate's Izamu for a game or two as well.

Spot on observation about me considering the WR Monks. I enjoyed messing around with Silurids in NB, and I'm not used to models like Shen or Yu with WR style that can push markers around if need be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a bit different, but I really like the Samurai, one (with Jikoku) is a staple in my Asami crews.  He's good for everything mentioned.  He provides ranged threat (which the crew otherwise lacked) which doesn't care about cover and can scatter onto a variety of targets (eg. mine once took out 3 stolen for 1AP). He also provides anti armour which 10T sorely needs.  He's great with Shen as he can be pushed into range of his 14" Gatling gun. He's also reasonably tough with armour 2 and not needing to be on the front lines.  I'd definitely take one over a sniper. Oh and they don't have a (0) and get extra Focus or no discard for defensive with Shen!

Umm.. How is Graves not tough?  He's 8ss, 9wd, armour 1, HtK with Black Blood... that's great for his cost!  I really rate him as a second line beater after using his push turn 1 (and maybe 2).  I really like him.

Definitely agree on the Low River Monks... get them over WR, you won't be disappointed. between them, 10T bros (who are also amazing), WR Style, you should have enough scheme marker shenanigans.  HR Monks are also not bad (esp for 5ss) for this and are really good scheme runner hunters.

Crime Bosses are also super solid, but like Graves, aren't frontline beaters like Yas or Izamu (they're really the only two we have).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Da Git that was pretty much my reasoning for the Samurai, though I've heard  great things about the Snipers too. Does anyone have a kind of break down of what scenarios they would use each of them in? Or do most people tend to stick with one of them for most situations?

Looking back on this as a whole, what I'm gathering is that I have:

-Plenty of support options between LR Monks, Yu, Tannen, and Shen when I use him.

-Scheming ability between the 10T Bros, LR Monks, and marker pushes from WR Style (with some anti-scheme runner potential with the HR Monks and Bros).

-Some ranged and midfield presence with either the Snipers or Samurai.

-Second line beaters between Graves (who also brings bonus movement potential) and possibly the Illuminated.

So really, would it be valid to say that what I'm missing most at the moment is a more frontline beatstick with more damage potential (i.e. Yas and Izamu)? If this is the case, who would you guys recommend for this role? Do any other models fit this role in the same way they do?

I ask mainly because 10T players are in short supply in my local meta, and quite a lot of similar threads are from several waves ago at this stage, so aside from a few dual faction models making appearances I have very little to go on in terms of the shape of the faction.

Thanks again for the advice everyone, it's really helpful so far!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like Kang alot as my beatstick.  His self heal is amazing late game.  Ml7 is really strong.  His ability to allow other models to ignore horror tests.  And against Ressers he is so good.  Also Mei is great against shooting armies and Rail Workers with their moderate damage of 4 and (0) to get pluses on the attack and damage flip are solid.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Hargus56 thanks for the input!

Funny you should say that, since I was eyeing up Mei Feng's box as a purchase somewhere down the line. I figured that there was some synergy to be had with the HR Monks in Shen's box and a lot of her thematic crew.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The best beatstick our faction has right now is by far Yasunori. The only thing that comes close is Kang vs undead/constructs, but otherwise nothing in faction can even hope to come close to Yasunori. Yasunori has 3 hits pretty much guaranteed every single charge due to the double :+flip on his attack on Ml6. This means a minimum of 3x3 wounds, which is something most other beaters can't even reach due to only have 2 AP.

If you don't want to get Yasunori, I would rather recommend Izamu due to his synergy with Shenlong. Armor +2 means he will be harder to take down, he has a self-heal and Shenlong's heal gives him a lot of extra durability. If your opponent can't bypass the armor, he always takes only 1 damage from an attack and Low River Style heals for 2, so every master AP can possibly take away the damage of an entire activation. Izamu also has Melee Expert, so he gets a third AP for an attack.

 

I would not recommend getting Mei Feng's box at this point as you already have Shenlong to try out. You can be much more efficient in spending that money on a Yasunori as he also works perfectly with Lynch.

 

On the topic of the High River Monk: I've really been trying to take these guys after the errata which lowered their costs, but it hasn't really been that effective yet. Most of the time I already have enough beatstick power, which means I need scheming power and HRM are purely offensive. They are great as scheme runner killers, but for scheming we have the Brothers. Brothers beat almost every other model in the 5 stone cost range for utility. I'd say Charm Warder also comes close, but overall the top pick (for me) is still the Brother.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Cashewmellow

Samurai
-Better against groups
-Higher General Bulk
-Low card reliance
-Melee covers a vital niche while still being pretty solid

Sniper
-Better range (Do not underestimate)
-Much better positioning due to from the shadows
-Hard to kill has less things that bypass it than armor
-Lower cost
-Reactivate on leader death

Samurai are ideal when you want to hold a position, don't want to invest cards in ranged support, aren't as concerned about mobility (ex: shenlong/misaki compensate with tools) and want to have a tool against armor

Sniper is ideal when their is minimal blocking terrain to counter obscene range, you can afford to give them severe cards, there is a good sniper post that would be time consuming to reach, and you don't want to throw mobility tools there way

Overall I prefer samurai due to their versatility and how well they scale with mobility tricks to cover their weakness, but the snipers can be very helpful depending on the map. Basically Samurai need mobility support, while Sniper needs card support.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Basically agree with everything @whodares & @Dr Mittens said above.

The only thing is Yas only(!) gets a a single :+flip to attack flips (not double unless you also go recalled training).  I really like Smoke Grenades on Yas. It basically completely shuts down Wp attacks, seriously the absolute LAST thing you want is Zoraida Obeying him to charge your own stuff.

The only issue I have with Yas is that he's kinda the model EVERYONE and his dog uses.  Izamu is great too, especially since Shen can super easily help with his speed issues.  I normally don't give Izamu an upgrade so he's 4ss cheaper that upgraded Yas which is a LR Monk, and that's nothing to sneeze at.

That was a great comparison of Samurai and Snipers. It really showed their strengths and more importantly highlighted what they need (movement and cards respectably).  I find movement is the easier one to get (She, Yu, Graves, Emissary, {Asami if you get her down the track}), as I generally want my high cards for other stuff other than first turn (and sometimes even then).

 A potential starting crew could be something like:

Declared Faction: TenThunders 
Crew Name: Shen - New 50ss 
Leader: Shenlong - Cache:(2)
   Wondering River Style 2ss
Peasant 2ss (pre-first turn, use Shen to get a second Peasant)
Izamu The Armor 10ss 
Mr. Graves 8ss
   The Peaceful Waters 0ss
Samurai 8ss 
   Favor of Jigoku 0ss 
Ten Thunders Brother 5ss 
Monk of High River 5ss 
Monk of Low River 4ss

There's still 6 ss left for either some upgrades, cache, or better yet another model (either 10T Bro or LR monk).

That lets you explore pretty much all the models you have.I'd pretty much be using Shen for support and stick to WR style, maybe swapping into LR as needed. Note there's no Yu for a reason, he might be too much to start with combined with Shen and if you're going to have Shen play support, I don't like using him. Later on, once you've got this down pat, swapping into Fermented or High for offence Shen, then yeah, Yu is great to provide support. 

That's what I'd be going with anyway...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agreed, especially coupled with the Emissary the LRM will pay dividends in a Shenlong crew. 

I actually started this faction with pretty much the same setup (Lynch, Shenlong, TTBs, Samurai, Emissary, Yasunori) so I can give you a bit of a rundown on what you're getting.

 Lynch n' crew : I assume you're already knowledgeable on these guys. Significant changes are largely upgrade based, as you gain access to Misdirection, which allows Lynch to become a bunch more survivable (if you have a model nearby that can soak damage).

Shenlong: I haven't had many successes with Lynch, but this master did marvels for me once I wrapped my head around his upgrade mechanics. Noteworthy are his 6" focus/defensive as a (0) aura, his pushes to give out fast (that can move scheme markers (both friendly and enemy, *don't underestimate this*) and a bunch of nifty tricks such as stealing common conditions from enemy models. He's also quite decent in melee as well. 

Peasant: 2 SS for 2 activations, which also give your models focus and defensive. Only reason they're not always taken is that our Wonder Weasel, the Kamaitachi, is also very good (and works well with Shenlong's upgrade swap mechanic), but they give it serious competition and tend to win out overall for me. 

High River Monks : Recently received a cost reduction, still kinda subpar but hey, at least the models are dope. In a way that is somewhat emblematic of our faction, our cheap models don't do much damage - Rail Workers and/or Sabre models notwithstanding.

Sensei Yu: Oh boy, pretty much my life's ethos. Yu can't charge, and while his melee is actually quite respectable, it's nothing to write home about for an 11 stone (you pretty much always take Wandering River Style, or Promising Student for Shenlong) model. However, Yu is our #1 facilitator when it comes to getting models and Scheme markers where you want them to be (and your opponent, by contrast, won't). Yu is magic, plain and simple, and while in kill-heavy pools the Emissary beats him (since he can also push up a beater and make him fast), in pools where scheme markers are abundant Yu quickly becomes the difference between shameful defeat and unquestionable victory. A prudent opponent will often not even consider taking marker dependent schemes against Yu. 

TTBs: I'm having a tough time deciding which of the above two models I like better, but while I can relate more to Yu, TTBs take the spot for my favourite models in the game. Surprisingly quick, decently durable (very much so, one might say, for their cost) and inordinately versatile, Brothers are your premiere scheme runners. The best 0 trigger is likely the place on the mask, but all of them can be situational useful. Further, people like to downplay their melee capabilities but I've used the mask trigger to great effect. If Yu is the butter, then they are the Swiss army knife that spreads said butter onto your helpless enemy (uh... I think that's how it works right?). 

Samurai: Aesthetically, I love these guys, and to be honest they're not half bad (you're likely already familiar with them to some degree). Well, in Shenlong, they take on another form due to being able to mitigate their slowness (aside from the Heavens Samurai, but nobody ever takes that guy :/) by means of pushing. I throughly enjoy "kicking" a Samurai forward, giving him fast and telling him to shoot at the enemies, three times at that. Free focus or defensive plays reasonably well with their abilities as well, and the heals that go abound in a Shenlong list can help you keep these warriors healthy. That being said, they are sadly somewhat outclassed by Snipers (free focus is just too good), but I think they're still pretty nice. 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×