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Showgirls Tactica Version 2011-02-23 This Tactica was written to help everyone understand Colette and her Showgirls including new and experienced players regardless of if you are playing with or against her crew. I will describe some basic tactics, gotchas, and synergy of the Showgirls and a little about who else works well with them. You'll need to come up with your own overall strategy of how to win each game because different victory conditions require different overall strategies. Corrections & updates are of course welcome. However, I ask that you first check the Rulebooks, latest FAQ, latest Errata, and Extra Errata and quote the relevant rules in the correction. From what I have seen most false corrections are caused by the poster going from memory and not realizing that something, like Companion, has been changed in the errata. Please, I ask of you, just take the time to check and make sure you got it right. Thread: Malifaux FAQ Download Thread: Malifaux Errata Thread: Extra Errata Assumptions In a Brawl a second master may adjust the hiring prices of some models or change which models may be hired. I'll also refer to your opponent as he, him, etc. I know your opponent could be female, but that makes writing rather clunky. Overview The Showgirls have diverse talents, strengths and weaknesses which often show up in pairs. Colette and Cassandra have Use Soulstone and can cast spells to damage enemies. Cassandra and Coryphee/Coryphee Duet are decent in melee and are able to move quite a distance in an activation. The Performer and Coryphee/Coryphee Duet can inflict Paralyzed. All the Showgirls either have or can gain the Use Soulstone ability. The Showgirls can use the Mechanical Doves as a Soulstone (even when they don't currently have the Use Soulstone ability) which gives any resulting Flip a . With Coryphee/Coryphee Duet, Mannequins, and Mechanical Doves (which are not Showgirls) you have a variety of non-living models. Your average damage is 2/3/4. It's not bad, but it's not great either so if you want something dead then you probably should attack in numbers. Some models are nearly impossible to kill or just won't stay dead. In such situations it is probably better to focus on your objectives and go for the VP that you can get. Colette's Minion Choices 9 Cassandra ( Showgirl ) 6 Performer & Mannequin ( Showgirl ) 7 Coryphee ( Showgirl ) 9 Joss ( Construct, M&SU Member ) 6 Gunsmith ( Special Forces(M&SU Asset) ) 6 Soulstone Miner ( Special Forces(M&SU Asset) ) 5 Johan ( Outcast, Mercenary, M&SU Member ) 12 Killjoy ( Outcast, Mercenary ) 6 Convict Gunslinger ( Outcast, Mercenary ) Colette's Totem Choices 2 Mechanical Dove ( Totem(Colette) ) 2 Essence of Power ( Totem ) 4 Student of Conflict ( Outcast, Mercenary, Totem ) Henchman Choices Kaeris ( Special Forces(M&SU Asset) ) Von Schill ( Special Forces(Freikorps) ) [General Showgirl Tactics] Vs Graverobbers and Terrifying Some enemy models may be a problem to deal with. Terrifying models require a moral test that you don't want to loose while Graverobbers can collect Corpse Counters when your living or undead models are killed. Coryphee, Coryphee Duet, and Mechanical Doves are immune to Terrifying Morale Duel due to being constructs. Colette and Cassandra can use range spells while the Performers have a ranged strike. If you must face a Morale Duel remember that Colette can boost the Wp of nearby Arcanist models. Vs Leveticus In Malifaux they say Death smiles at everyone. They also say Leveticus always smiles back. Vs Lilith The number 1 tactical error I see people make with Lilith is they send Lilith out on her own. This is the best way to loose Lilith because Colette and a few Mechanical Doves can eat through her with Magician's Duel. Lilith will resist it with her Ca which is reduced to 3. 'Nuff said. For Lilith's crew I recommend taking the Primordial Magic Totem over the Malifaux Cherub because the extra Control Card makes a huge difference. The Malifaux Cherub's Love spell isn't useful against Colette who is the Showgirl's biggest threat and is at most a moderate inconvenience to the rest of the crew. A good Lilith player will pair Lilith with a Mature Nephilim (or something similar) when her crew needs to split up. To counter this cast Disappearing Act and try to get the Mannequin Replacement trigger to go off. With cheating in a high Tomes and using a Soulstone you have about a 50% of triggering Mannequin Replacement. You may want to wait until your opponent has used a couple of high cards from his hand. Usually your opponent will draw 2 or 3 high (10+) cards. Terror Tots (and all Nephilim really) are also difficult to deal with for the Showgirls because of Black Blood. The Showgirls will almost always be taking wounds in melee. Ranged attacks can soften them up, but you are almost guaranteed to end up in melee. The Performers can use Mesmerizing to Slow them and have Irresistible which makes them difficult to kill. Spread your Showgirls out so Black Blood hits as few Showgirls as possible. If you can, send your Mannequins in first. If you give them Use Soulstone they can do a damage prevention flip if they are about to loose their last wound and Showgirls within 2" of a Mannequin can heal any Manneuqin 1 Wd thanks to the Fix Mannequin ability. See Fixing Mannequins below on how to abuse this and make your opponent demand that the Mannequins get cuddled. The Gunsmith looks to be decent against Nephilim. However, it is not difficult for most Nephilim to get into melee with the Gunsmith and reduce him to a Blood Counter. Sure, he is Terrifying > 12 to Ht 1 models like the Terror Tots and Totems, but Wp 5 is decent enough and Young Nephilim and Mature Nephilim won't find him Terrifying at all. Overall you are probably better off with the Performer and Mannequin because you can heal them and because they are just much more difficult to kill. Against Lilith and a few Tots he maybe worth it, especially if you can cast Lead Storm in the middle of a bunch of Terror Tots. Important: Black Blood will only damage you if you damage it with a melee attack. Ranged Strikes, Ranged Spells, and Poison will not trigger Black Blood. I have yet to play against Black Blood Shaman, Lelu, Lilitu, and Nekima but would expect to see them in larger Soulstone games. Read the thread Question on Maturing Terror Tots Turn 1 to find out about how to use the Black Blood Shaman and killing the Desperate Mercenary to gain Blood Counters to grow Nephilim. Further Reading: Thread: Tactica: Lilith Thread: Question on Maturing Terror Tots Turn 1. Vs Pandora Pandora via her Emotional Trauma ability (and quite often Doppelganger mimicking Emotional Trauma) and the Sorrow's Emotional Stress make her the Death of a Thousand Cuts Master. Every time you loose a duel where you defend using the Wp stat these abilities cause you to take additional wounds. They are accumulative and can be deadly. Also, Doppelganger has Ill Omens which give opponents a on Initiative flips so you can count on Pandora always going first. If you want to negate wounds using a Damage Prevention Flip you must do one flip for each source that inflicted damage. This means if a defending model looses a Wp Duel and is hit by two models with Emotional Trauma and three with Emotional Stress (each inflicting 1 Wd) then the defending model with Use Soulstone may make 5 Damage Prevention Flips and each flip can negate the damage from one source. High Wp is the best defense so try to keep your Arcanists models within 4" of Colette for a +2 Wp boost. Each Coryphee has 4 Wp but a Coryphee Duet has 6 Wp and double the Wd so Dance Together is probably a good idea. If your Coryphee uses Lost in Dance to gain +2 Wp before Dance Together then the +2 Wp will carry over to the placed Coryphee Duet until the end of the turn. See the reference on Replace below. As long as Cassandra has Celebrity active she can't be targeted by Incite or Pacify and a Sorrow can not Link to her. However, Pandora's spells are still just as effective and will be a Wp duel for Cassandra. The Gunsmith has Smoldering Heart and may take a Wd to boost his Wp from 4 to 7. A good Pandora player will keep Pandora and the Doppleganger out of harm's way (but within 12" of what she is trying to kill), use the terrain to provide them cover, and Link a Sorrow to Pandora for transferring damage to. She also has Expose Fears Wp duel you must pass to target her and can also make Damage Prevention Flips when damage/wounds are inflicted on her. One thing that you can do is keep summoning Mechanical Doves. The Dove's Detonate Soulstone does not target Pandora (so no Expose Fears) and will probably hit the other Woes around her. With Pandora's 2 Df the Df > 14 duel will be almost impossible for her to resist the damage though it will likely be transfered to another Woe. Summoned Doves are slow on the turn they were summoned, but on the next turn you can fly one in (often over walls and buildings), then Detonate Soulstone! Reference: Core Rulebook: Using Soulstones to Prevent Damage (pg 57) Malifaux Errata (Version 1, January 2010): Replace (p.3) Ranged Spells Colette and Cassandra (via Understudy) can both use Discharge Soulstone which is a range 12 armor-ignoring spell with Dg 2/3/5. Unfortunately Understudy can only be used once an activation. Also, this spell can't be used in melee. The Performers have a ranged strike. If you want more ranged firepower you could always run Gunsmiths and Convict Gunslingers. Melee Spells At some point you will probably get into melee combat. Colette, Cassandra (via Understudy), and Mechanical Dove (via Magical Extension) can cast Magician's Duel which is great against opponents with a low Ca stat. Those with Use Soulstone (mostly Masters and Henchmen) have their Ca lowered when they resist this spell. The Dg 2/3/5 isn't bad and if you kill the target you gain a Soulstone. If you have 3 Mechanical Doves you can fly them over from cover and cast Magician's Duel on your opponent's Master. If all goes well then you will probably kill your opponent's Master and gain a nice shiny Soulstone for yourself. If a Dove gets killed it's no big deal. You can summon a new dove once per turn so they are somewhat expendable. Don't forget that Magical Extension allows you to use a Soulstone to change the casting total. Fear the Doves! Melee Strikers (Cassandra, Coryphee, & Coryphee Duet) Cassandra and Coryphee Duet have high Cb and decent Dg 2/3/4 stats, they can move around quite far, and Cassandra and Coryphee both have Dance Partner. Coryphee's and Coryphee Duet's weapons are Paired (giving a to Attack Flips) and Coryphee Duet's weapon also gives its Damage Flips a . Their movement makes them excellent choices for going after objectives. Dance Partner is useful for bringing in more melee models to deal with something that needs a good killing. Against Spirits and models with Armor they are much less effective. They may be your melee force but they are not heavy hitters. Slow Playing Showgirls With up to 3 Mechanical Doves and the Performer & Mannequins costing 6ss for the pair you can easily outnumber your opponent in models. This way you can wait until all of your opponent's models have activated and can activate the rest of your crew without your opponent activating this turn. This is useful for using the Mechanical Doves to fly in and attack a target with Magician's Duel and to use Colette to generate Soulstones (see Colette the Soulstone Factory below). Alpha Strike! The Mannequins have Companion(Showgirl) which allows them to activate simultaneously with all other Showgirls within 6". This may be useful for dealing with an enemy model that just needs a good killing. Reference: Malifaux Errata: Companion, pg 7 [Character-Specific Tactics] Colette Du Bois Pronounced: Doo-Bwah / Due-Bwah, Doo-Boys / Due-Boyss. There are several correct ways to pronounce the surname Du Bois. The first pair is a more common French pronunciation, second pair is how W.E.B. Du Bois pronounced his name using English pronunciation. Please use the first pronunciation, it sounds cuter and less slutty than the second. Colette is great for going against almost anything that isn't terrifying or an anti-spell caster. Magician's Duel is one of my favorite spells and if attacked she may trigger A Blinding Flash to slow the attacker and switch places with another Showgirl. She can play the rolls of Attacker, Support, Objective Taker, and Dove Spawner. She is almost immortal too (see below). Colette the Almost Immortal When Colette is reduced to zero wounds her Slow to Die 1 AP will be available. You could use Death Defying if you have a Soulstone, 6:masks or better, and are willing to sacrifice a useful Showgirl (or a Mannequin), or you could just spend a Soulstone and make a healing flip. Either way if you flip a Black Joker she's dead. The Henchman Von Schill also has Slow to Die and Use Soulstone. The next time you hear someone say something about Colette being unkillable don't forget to bring up Bettie Noire, Von Schill, Pandora and Leveticus! Colette the Soulstone Factory Activate Colette and use your Artificial Soulstone for Soulstone Infusion to gain Reactivate. Use Soulstone Manipulation to discard 2 control cards and gain 1 Soulstone. You now have 1 AP left for this activation. When Colette activates again she can use Soulstone Manipulation a second time. The leftover AP could be spent on moving her around. I suggest doing this during turn one and always near the end of the turn when you're least likely to need control cards in your hand. Triple Tomes for Colette's Mannequin Replacement (:tomes:tomes:tomes) There are two ways to get the Disappearing Act spell and Mannequin Replacement trigger to go off. In Scraps the only way is to get a :tomes on the casting flip, cheat one in if you need to, then use a Soulstone to add to the casting total and hope for a :tomes. The flip receives due to Colette's Soulstone Augury. Combined with the :tomes in Colette's Ca this gives you three tomes. In a Brawl you can have both Collette and Ramos. Give Ramos the Mobile Toolkit totem which has an action to add a :tomes to Colette's casting total. Now she would only need to flip/cheat a single :tomes in to get Mannequin Replacement to trigger. Illusionist without activating Colette! It is best to use a Mannequin for this. Make sure you have a card with a :tomes on it in your hand. If you want to do this sometime after turn 1 then Link the Mannequin to her. First, activate the Mannequin (and Companion if you want), then have the Mannequin Bash Colette. Cheat Colette's defense with a :tomes card if needed and cheat the attack down if needed. Now activate the defense trigger A Blinding Flash which will inflict Slow on the already Slow Mannequin and allow Colette to change places with any Showgirl within 18”. A Blinding Flash will be able to trigger regardless of if the attack hits or not. Don't forget, the two models are still Linked so when Colette Walks or ends her activation the Mannequin will be pushed back into base contact with her. Core Rulebook: Melee Basics - Bash (pg 52) Malifaux Errata: Combat - Declare Target, then Check Range (pg 4) Cassandra Cassandra is highly mobile, decent with melee strikes and magical melee/ranged attacks. Opponents will try and kill her so burning a few Soulstones to keep her alive is probably a good idea. Cassandra the Swift Cassandra can be many things. If you need to take objectives don't forget Confident allows her to be pushed 6” before the first model activates on the first turn. Nimble gives her a free Walk action each activation as well. Assuming you need 1 AP to Interact with something you can move her up to 16” through open terrain on the first turn. Cassandra Charging Have Cassandra use the Sword Dance zero-action before Charging an enemy. You may then make one free attack because of Sword Dance, then the attack from charge which gains a on the damage flip. Note: Walking, Charging, and Jumping, are all movement actions while anything that Pushes a model is not. Heal the Enemy! Cassandra and Coryphee Duet both have a spell called Elegance which heals only enemy models. To me this always seemed a counter-productive way to get a Soulstone but then it hit me, Leveticus actually tries to kill himself to gain a new hand of control cards. Why not keep him alive and starve him of his ability to cheat fate and you can gain a Soulstone in the process? There should be plenty of time to kill him and a Hallow Waif once everything else is good and dead. Leveticus also has a Master Specific Scheme: "Souless(sic) Life" which dieing on 4 different turns earns him Victory Points. Performers Despite being bundled with the Mannequins the Performers work much better with Collette buffing their Wp via Special Charm. Try to keep Colette within 4” to boost the Wp to 7. Poison ring may use Wp instead of Cb for attack flips. Mesmerizing also benefits from a boost in Wp. Don't forget to use Mesmerizing whenever you can. It is the only zero-action the Performer has and Slowing your opponent prevents non-fast models from using 2 AP abilities. Also, Mesmerizing is an Action so it does not require line of sight. Enemies with Immune to Influence are immune to Wp Duels when they are the defender. This means they are immune to Mesmerizing, and all of the Performer's spells. However, the Wp Duel for Irresistible must still be taken. By now Pandora with her Emotional Trauma ability has probably popped into your head. Well, there had to be a reason for the Performer and Mannequin pair to be available as Mercenaries. Mannequins I find my Mannequins are often killed in a single turn with Anti-armor attacks or by 3 different attacks. However, they do have some uses. 1) They can Alpha Strike using Companion(Showgirl). 2) Beautiful Clothes is a mediocre attack that damages only on two triggers. Still, not bad for free. 3) They can be used to change places with another showgirl. 4) They can Link to a Showgirl and create a Mirrors Aura. 5) See Illusionist without activating Colette! above. 6) Mannequins can be healed 1 Wd for 1 AP by any Showgirl within 2" of a Mannequin (including itself). See Fixing Mannequins below on how to really abuse this. Walking a Mannequin into a dangerous situation to change places with Colette is one of the best uses for a Mannequin. Colette can pop in, do whatever, reactivate and change places again (possibly bringing in another Showgirl to finish the job). See "Performers and Mannequins: Willpower" below. Mannequins, Showgirls & Mirrors Mannequins have spell called Mirrors which causes models hit with weak damage to suffer no damage. This may be moderately useful in some situations, but only if the attackers damage flip is at a negative twist (). If not then the attacker can cheat the damage up to moderate or severe damage and you had cast Mirrors for nothing. Negative damage twists will be gained when the attack total is equal to the defense total (adds a :-fate) or beats it by 5 or less (adds ). Chances of a Damage Flip resulting in Weak Damage based on Negative twists. 37.04% No twist, the flip can be cheated. 60.80% 75.87% :-fate 85.34% :-fate:-fate I usually don't bother with mirrors because of how difficult it is to cast and usually have better things to do with control cards. Statistics are based on drawing from a control deck with all 54 cards. Reference: Thanks to Natty for the correct math on this <http://wyrd-games.net/forum/showpost.php?p=169839&postcount=23>. Coryphee Pronounced: kawr-ee-fay or kawr-i-fay Everyone loves Coryphee! Coryphee has some decent defense abilities. With Paired Blades and melee stats similar to Cassandra they can do lots of damage. Being Constructs they will ignore morale duels including Terrifying. Coryphee & Performer You may want to buff your Coryphee's Wp by placing Colette within 4” of the Coryphee and use the action Lost in Dance. With both buffs Coryphee will have a respectable 8 Wp. Corephee Duet does not have Lost in Dance but has a higher basic Wp. Have your Coryphee attack with Blinding and cheat the damage flip to severe damage to Paralyze the target. Then activate a Performer and use the action Poison Gift to inflict 4 poison counters. 3 Dg from Blinding, + 4 Dg from activating while Paralyzed, + 3 Dg from activating after Paralyzed has warn off is a total of 10 damage. Few models will survive and be able to to take any actions ofter this. Joss Although not often taken in a Showgirls crew, Joss is a valid choice. Joss is a construct which means he is a non-living model and won't take Morale Duels (including the ones caused by Terrifying). His Talents make him a better damage dealer than his stats make him appear. Also, Johan's melee and ranged attacks gain a Cb bonus when near a M&SU member like Joss. Both Joss and Johan have the same Wk/Cg and should work well when paired together. Remember, if given an opportunity your opponent will likely try and kill Joss. Keeping him with other models of your crew and behind cover will help keep him alive. Most of the time you are better off with a Showgirl rather than Joss. Gunsmith The Gunsmith is an excellent ranged Arcanist model against anything that isn't a spirit. Seriously, spirits half non-magical damage and the Gunsmith's Custom Pistol doesn't have any special effects against them. However, his Ruthless does counter Pitiful. The Gunsmith is a good alternative to Performers and Mannequins if you don't plan on using the Performers Poison Talents, Expensive Gift, or Seduction. Soulstone Miner The Soulstone Miner is an interesting model because it can use Tunneling to place a Tunneling Marker and move underground without risking being attacked. Because it is litterally buried it can't be attacked. Like the Large Steampunk Arachnid it is an anti-armor model. It's Limited Soulstone Use and ability to create Soulstones makes it fit in with the Showgirls thematically, but seems to be situational at best. Tunneling: On your first turn you can walk 5", then perform the Tunneling action which buries the Soulstone Miner and gives you a Tunneling Marker as long is it stays buried. During the Start Closing phase you may move the Tunneling marker up to 8" ignoring everything else in play. During the Start Activation phase you may "unbury" your Soulstone Miner, or keep it buried. Remember, the turn he "unburies" himself he will be insignificant which often effects objectives. However, it has average defense stats at best. Colette has an anti-armor spell which Cassandra may cast via understudy. The Showgirls are already good about being able to get to objectives most of the time. TODO: Try this against Perdita and Family. Tunnel over, pop up. "Hello! Welcome to melee my little Nino!" Johan Pronounced: yo-hahn or yo-han Johan deals Magical Anti-armor damage making him useful against Jack Daw and anything with armor. He also has a decent ranged attack. His attacks also gain +2 Cb while near M&SU Members (but not M&SU Assets). If you plan on taking Von Schill as a Mercenary Henchman or another Special Forces(Freikorps) model the Freikorps Mercenary ability will NOT prevent you from hiring Johan because Colette hires him via Labor Union, not as a Mercenary. Summoning Killjoy on the Cheap Killjoy already costs 12 Soulstones for Colette's crew to hire, plus the cost of whatever you sacrifice to summon him. One cheap way to summon Killjoy is to sacrifice a Mannequin which costs you nothing extra if you run Performers. Or you could sacrifice a Mechanical Dove. Let's say Colette is in combat within 6 or 8 inches of someone who really could use Killjoy's attention. Have Colette use Trick of the Hat (at a cost of 1ss and maybe an 8+ control card) to summon a Mechanical Dove within 6" of Colette. The Mechanical Dove may activate immediately after Colette (though it would be Slow from being summoned) and let the Dove take the (1) Sacrificed action to summon Killjoy. Convict Gunslinger The wording on how Suppressing Fire and Paralyze interact is a bit odd, but may inflict Paralyzed making the target model susceptible to the Performer's Poison Gift action. Reference: Thread: Suppressing Fire & Paralyzed [Totems] There are several totems that may be used with Colette (more if you recruit Hamlin), but I'll list those which have the most potential. Burying a Totem Oddly enough when a totem gets buried another totem can be summoned without going over the limit of one totem per Master/Henchman. If the buried totem returns to play and you are over the limit of totems then the one returning to play can't connect to the master and is immediately sacrificed. This can have some bizarre uses. For instance if a large group of enemy models is within 6" of Colette she can bury her totem (such as Essence of Power) and summon a Mechanical Dove near as many of the enemy models as possible. When the Dove activates (and don't forget it may activate right after Colette) it will be slow but can use Detonate Soulstone and damage everything within 2". In general you probably will never bury your own Totem, but an opponent may bury your totem so be aware you can just summon another one. Malifaux Errata (Version 1, January 2010): pg 1 Totem. Thread: Voodoo Dolls and the Pine Box Mechanical Dove Mechanical Dove is an excellent totem and I would always recommend using them. Don't forget, if you use another totem and it gets killed, sacrificed, or burred you can summon a Mechanical Dove. Colette may have up to 3 Mechanical Doves at once, they can fly, and they have Wk/Cg of 10"/-. Until it attacks it has Harmless and a defense of 5 which is decent for a totem. Although the totem has no weapons (other than Bash) it has two good offensive talents. Detonate Soulstone action can damage enemies in a 2” radius this is good if there are a lot of enemies close together. Use the spell Magical Extension to cast Colette's Magician's Duel on an enemy, especially on a Master or Henchman. With the -2Ca penalty applied to any target with Use Soulstone the Mechanical Dove has a good chance of causing damage. Many other models have low casting as well and are also good targets. This is the only spell the Mechanical Dove may cast because Colette's other spells require discarding a Soulstone and the Mechanical Dove does not have Use Soulstone. It can't even use Soulstone Powered from another Mechanical Dove because it is not a Showgirl. Be aware that Magical Extension allows a Soulstone to be used to change the casting total when when Magical Extension used to cast a spell. Cheating Fate and using a Soulstone this way is a great way to make sure Magician's Duel hits. This is true for all Totems in the game. Soulstone Powered: A friendly Showgirl model within 3" of this model (Mechanical Dove) may sacrifice it when that model could use a Soulstone. The Showgirl gains the benefit of having discarded a Soulstone even if she does not have the Use Soulstone Ability. If the Soulstone was used to flip a card, by a model other than Colette, that flip receives . Mechanical Dove does lack Companion(Colette). This is probably to prevent Alpha Striking with Mechanical Doves due to how Companion now works. Student of Conflict (Not Recommended) He is a bit expensive to recruit, but if you don't plan on moving Colette around you can use his Assist action to give Colette Fast. With her ability to reactivate you will get a total of 6 General AP she can use, useful if you know your opponent will gain VP for Wounding Colette or if she is sitting on an objective. If he dies then you may want to start summoning Mechanical Doves. I would suggest taking Mechanical Doves unless you really want to sit on an objective and make ranged armor-ignoring attacks. Those attacks will cost Soulstones! Overall, you are probably better off with two Mechanical Doves instead. Essence of Power (Not Recommended) He can link to Colette and give her spell damage flips . He'll probably be killed at some point so start summoning Mechanical Doves once that happens. This may be useful if you go on the offensive with Colette. Don't forget, if you loose this guy you can summon a Mechanical Dove near an enemy and cast Magician's Duel via Magical Extension. Essence of Power has the same casting as Mechanical Dove so using him to cast Magician's Duel a couple of times when something gets close to him is a good idea. However, you are probably always better off with Mechanical Doves. [brawls] Ramos His Controlled Detonation works well with Mechanical Doves as well as Steampunk Arachnids. Blowing up Steampunk Arachnids is usually the better option, but they can't move as far as the Doves. After you have the Doves fly in and use Magician's Duel you can sacrifice them to cause 2, 2 Dg. You should take the Mobile Toolkit as his totem which works well with him and Colette. Further Reading: Thread: Tactica: Ramos C. Hoffman Fist choose Arcanists as your faction (because this doesn't work if your faction is the Guild). Then hire Colette. Colette's Labor Union ability allows her to hire Masters so C. Hoffman can be hired with her. Hoffman's Arcanist Ties ability is now redundant as it gives you a subset of what you can hire from within your faction. Because your faction is Arcanists you can not hire his Guild Mechanical Attendant totem. However, you can hire the Arcanist Mobile Toolkit for him. Hoffman works well with constructs (including Coryphee and Coryphee Duet) who are close by or in base contact with him. Once a C. Hoffman Tactica exists I'll list it under Further Reading. Reference: Core Rulebook: 5. Hire Crews - Masters (p.96) Kaeris Kaeris does not have much synergy with other models. Her synergy is around sacrificing expendable constructs (Steampunk Arachnids and Mechanical Doves) to inflict Burning Counters, then punishing anyone with a Burning Counter. (She does have other ways to inflict burning Counters). Right now the only non-mercenary totem Kaeris can take is Essence of Power which you can use to Link to one of your spell casters to give their spell damage a . She may eventually get her own totem (kinda like how Molly Squidpiddge has Necrotic Machine). As a Henchman she seems to work best with Ramos and/or Colette. Also, if you select the Guild as your faction and Hire C. Hoffman he can hire Ramos and Ramos may hire Kaeris as a Henchman so she can be used by both the Guild and Arcanists as a Henchman. Mobile Toolkit Mobile Toolkit has a one-action called Controlled Detonation that can be used to target a friendly construct (Mechanical Dove or Mannequin) within 12". The target generates a 2, Dg 2 before being removed from play. This is better than the Mechanical Dove's Detonate Soulstone because Controlled Detonation does not have a resist/defense duel. Both Ramos and C. Hoffman may take the Mobile Toolkit totem which can add +:tomes to Ca. For Kaeris this will trigger Surge and will make casting Accelerant easier. For Colette this makes casting Disappearing Act and triggering Mannequin Replacement easier. For C. Hoffman this can help him cast Combat Mechanic. For Ramos this can help him cast Construct Spider and Electrical Creation. [strategies] Most Strategies are straightforward but some have a few caveats. Remember, you select your Strategy before you hire your crew. If you don't think you can pull off your Strategy with Colette's crew you can hire a different crew. Most tournaments allow you to use two or more crews. Claim Jump - If playing against a ranged crew try to place your Claim Marker behind cover like a building. Your Mannequins and Mechanical Doves can't help you score VP but you can use them to deal with your enemies. Don't forget, Illusionist does not require Line of Sight. Contain Power - To score 4 VP you must kill all your opponent's models which is not the strong suit of the Showgirls. Some masters play defensively while others are just difficult to kill. If facing an experienced Colette, Leveticus or Pandora player this can be extremely difficult. In the end if you know you can't kill your opponent's master then you have no chance to score any VP for this Strategy. In this case ignore this Strategy and work on scoring through Schemes and denying your opponent his VP. Escape and Survive - Using Coryphee's Dance Together will count against you with this Strategy at the end of the Encounter. However, Coryphee Duet's Dance Apart will give you back two Coryphees which will both count towards scoring VP. Be sure to Dance Apart before the end of the Encounter so you will have 2 models that will count. Slaughter - Check the rulebook for the details of this strategy. Some Models like Mannequins have a Soulstone Cost of - while others like Coryphee Duet, Ashen Core, and Dust Storm have a cost of Placed, and still others like Hallow Waif, Voodoo Doll, and Ikiryo have a cost of Summoned. Such models don't count toward this Strategy when they are killed. Also, if a player Kills or Sacrifices his own model they do not count toward this Strategy either. If your opponent has Slaughter then you can safely blow up your own Mechanical Doves and sacrifice two of your Coryphees to summon a Coryphee Duet. Reference: Thread: Slaughter and Summoned Models Treasure Hunt - This Strategy gives any model carrying the Treasure Counter some significant drawbacks, the most severe of which is probably a reduction in movement. Coryphee Duet and Cassandra can both walk up to 3 times in a single activation. Insignificant models may grab the Treasure Counter so your Mechanical Doves can be used to grab it if it is in an area that is difficult to get to, (just make sure a non-insignificant model grabs it in your Deployment Zone before the end of the encounter) You MUST walk the Treasure Counter back to your Deployment Zone and have a non-insignificant model holding it to score all 4 VP. If you use Colette's Illusionist the Treasure Counter will be dropped. [schemes] This is a list of all the schemes available to Colette's crew (as of Rising Powers) and and preceded the maximum number of VP you can gain from each. Some Strategies may make some Schemes more difficult to accomplish. If you are able to take Power Ritual and Steal Relic you can end up scoring 6 VP without too much trouble. Against Showgirl Schemes These are notes on Schemes that may be taken against Colette. 2 VP: Kidnap (Neverborn Only) - This is an excellent Scheme to take against a Colette player because you score VP is based on three specific models that you note. If they are not in play at the end of the encounter for any reason they count toward this strategy. You don't need to kill or sacrifice them yourself so why not pick ones your opponent will kill or sacrifice for you? To be perfectly clear only the original model is the one that counts. If you sacrifice two Coryphees to summon a Coryphee Duet then those two Coryphees count as having been Sacrificed, even if the Coryphee Duet uses Dance Apart. Those are two new Coryphees that get summoned. Got it? Buried models that return to play are still the original model. However, Buried models that are still Buried when the encounter ends count towards storing VP. Mechanical Doves are almost guaranteed to die as exploding doves, flying Soulstones, or something about to zap you with Magician's Duel. A pair of Coryphees are likely to be sacrificed to summon a Coryphee Duet. This Scheme does not grant any VP for announcing so you won't find out until the end of the game. Easy Schemes You should almost always be able to accomplish these schemes. Bodyguard(Colette) and Sabotage can be safely announced while Power Ritual doesn't give you any extra VP for announcing it. Power Ritual may make it difficult to gain VP from some Strategies. 2 VP: Bodyguard - This is one of the easiest schemes for Colette's crew if you note Colette as the one you want to bodyguard. Go ahead and announce when you Bodyguard Colette for the maximum VP. 3 VP: Power Ritual (Arcanists Only) - This scheme is easy to pull off with Cassandra and Coryphee Duet. The (1) Interact action may also be done while locked in melee. Take this scheme if it won't interfere with your other objectives. With Corner Deployment have Cassandra and 2 Coryphees ready to head for the left and right corners while another Showgirl is in your corner to grab that one. Have the two Coryphees Dance Together and move to their corner. Once Cassandra has interacted with her corner she can use Dance Partner (when close enough to the Coryphee Duet) to bring her to them and head for the last corner. 2 VP: Sabotage (Arcanists Only) - Cassandra or Coryphee Duet may be able to complete this during the first activation depending on how you set up the terrain. The (1) Interact action may be done while in melee. This and Bodyguard are probably the easiest schemes for the Showgirls to accomplish. Situational Schemes These schemes may or may work well for you depending on the terrain, your Strategies and other Schemes, your opponents Strategies, Schemes, and models. Choose carefully. 2 VP: Assassinate - Some masters will play more defensively while others are just difficult to kill. Only take this scheme if your opponent will be using a master you know you can get to and kill. 2 VP: Breakthrough - This may be a good scheme to take if you opponent has few non-insignificant models and you have also taken Power Ritual. 2 VP: Frame for Murder - If you know that an enemy Master is going to try to kill one of your specific models then this may be a good scheme to take. Insignificant models may be used so you can select a Mechanical Dove or Mannequin. Just make sure the enemy Master is the one to kill it. 2 VP: Grudge - Only take this scheme if you know you will be killing a specific model for any reason. Don't select a model that will likely be sacrificed by your opponent (for summoning Killjoy, to gain Blood Counters, or some other reason). Coryphee, Coryphee Duet, Mechanical Doves, Cassandra, and Colette have decent melee strikes and/or melee spells. If you take the Kill Protegee scheme you will probably want to select the same model for this scheme. 2 VP: Hold Out - Only take this if you are sure your opponent won't be inside your deployment zone at the end of the game. Many Strategies and Schemes require you to leave your deployment zone and an opponent with the Breakthrough scheme will be trying to enter your deployment zone. 2 VP: Kill Protegee - Only take this if you are planning to kill off your opponent's most expensive model. May work well with Grudge. 2 VP: Perfect Performance (Colette Du Bois Only) - This scheme requires the crew to have at least 7 Soulstones at the end of the encounter. Because Colette's crew can burn through Soulstones this can actually be quite difficult. However, with enough resources on turn 6 (2 to 4 control cards and several non-insignificant models) you can create quite a few Soulstones. Assuming you have Colette reactivate she will have a total of 4 AP to spend making Soulstones this turn. She can use Soultone Manipulation and gain 1 Soulstone once per activation. Colette can also use the Drain Souls action which allows you to sacrifice 3 friendly non-insignificant models within 6" and turn them each into a Soulstone. Drain Souls does give all your non-masters an accumulative -1 WP each time the action is taken, another reason to do this as your last action. When flipping to determine if the Encounter ends, Colette's The Show Must Go On can be used to re-flip to try to prevent the game from continuing. Reference: Core Rulebook: Drain Souls (p62) 2 VP: Steak a Claim - If you are planning on being next to or on a piece of terrain on your opponent's side of the table then this may be a good scheme to take. Otherwise you should pick something else. May work well with Breakthrough. 3 VP: Steal Relic - This scheme may be good to take against a master who works well in melee like Lilith. This is easier if the Master has low Wp. Try to have a high card in your hand to cheat this duel with. Colette is probably your best model to use for this. Let's Not and Say "We Didn't" Schemes These schemes are usually very difficult for Colette's crew to pull off, even if you don't announce them. Taking these schemes is like giving yourself a VP handicap. 2 VP: Extermination - Showgirls are not about killing so this is not a good scheme for them. If you do take this scheme make sure you pick a subtype that does not regenerate. 3 VP: Eye for an Eye - This is just a difficult scheme and not worth the points if you don't announce it. If you really want 3 VP then I suggest taking Power Ritual or Steal Relic. [Gotchas and Reminders] Use Soulstone & other Soulstone Uses If you are not familiar with something in this list please check the listed sources below for an explanation of what the rules are. Re-flip Individual Strategies. During an Expanded Encounter a 1 to 8 on the Expanded Encounter Chart will allow you to flip for Individual Strategies. You may only re-flip to change the selection on the Individual Strategies Chart. Re-flip your initiative flip. A model with the Use Soulstone ability may change (add to) the starting total in both Simple Duels and Opposed Duels. A model with the Use Soulstone ability receives wounds it may do a Damage Prevention Flip. A model with the Use Soulstone ability may take a (1) Healing Flip action to recover lost wounds. Reference: Rising Powers: Individual Strategies Chart (pg 42) Core Rulebook: Flip for Initiative (pg 43) Core Rulebook: It's all in the Cards (pg 36) Core Rulebook: Using Soulstones to Prevent Damage (pg 57) Core Rulebook: Healing Flip (pg 57) Malifaux Errata: Healing/Damage Chart (pg 4) Thread: Soulstones - A comprehensive list of what you can use them for? Reactivate (but Always Later) A model with Reactivate is allowed to activate a second time in a turn. Colette can give herself Reactivate during her activation. However, once her current activation (or a Simultaneous Activation) ends it is your opponent's turn to activate. In other words Reactivate does not allow Colette to finish her first action and reactivate immediately if your opponent has models to activate. Mannequin and Companion (Showgirl) is not Recursive During a Simultaneous Activation (via Companion) you can not activate Colette, have her gain Reactivate, have another Mannequin Companion(Showgirl), and have Colette activate again. Reference Thread: Mannequin and Companion (Showgirl) Thread: Simultaneous Activation Question - Relevant for Belles and Guild Hounds Colette's Artificial Soulstone Colette's Artificial Soulstone states that it can't be used to summon any models. New players will often overlook this rule. This means Trick of the Hat can't summon a Mechanical Dove and a Ronin's Always for Hire can't use the Artificial Soulstone if one one is in play. Magical Extension is Once Per Activation! All totems have Magical Extension which allows you to cast a spell from the connected Master once per activation. As nice as it would be to attack twice with Magician's duel, you can't. Mechanical Doves can still use Detonate Soulstone and Bash. Cassandra the Celebrity While Celebrity is in effect she can only be targeted by ranged strikes and spell attacks. This also means Cassandra can not cast Sublime Performance because spells with a Range of C target the caster. Also, the Mannequin can't Link to her (as it also targets, but is not a ranged strike or spell attack) and can't use any of the effects of Tricks of the Trade which target Cassandra. Cassandra can't use her Understudy to cast Tricks of the Trade either. Of this, the most useful thing you are prevented from doing is Linking a Mannequin to Cassandra. With Cassandra using Southern Charm to give all attack and damage flips a and a Linked Mannequin you could have a reasonable tank. But unless Celebrity is changed in an errata you can't do this at the beginning of the game. Note that Colette's Illusionist action does not target anything so it can be used to switch Colette and Cassandra while Celebrity is still active. Also, all of Cassandra's Actions (Blond Act, Southern Charm, Sword Dance, Dance Partner, Sultry, and Understudy) do not target Cassandra. Be careful with the Understudy action and make sure the spell doesn't target Cassandra! Reference: Thread: Celebrity Semantics (re-post from Arcanist forum) Performer's Expensive Gift It is a requirement that your opponent discards a Soulstone for you to gain one. If your opponent uses the last Soulstone to defend and you still win the duel you do not gain a Soulstone. By the same logic this spell will always fizzle against an opponent with no Soulstones to begin with. Reference: Thread: Expensive Gift Poison Prevention Models with the Use Soulstone ability can perform a Damage Prevention Flip to prevent the damage inflicted when they activate when poisoned. Reference: Thread: Poison and Soulstones Performers and Mannequins: Willpower You may have noticed that most of the Performer's Talents involve some sort of Wp Duel. There are two halves to every Opposed Duel so if the Performer successfully performs a melee strike with her Poison Ring using her Wp instead of her Cb then she won a Wp duel, but the defender lost a Df duel because those are the stats they each used in the duel. Because the defender is defending using its Df stat it is not take part in a willpower duel. This means enemies with Immune to Influence are immune to the Performer's Mesmerizing, Expensive Gift, Seduction, and Siren Call and the Mannequin's Beautiful Clothes, but not Poison Ring using Wp. Also, if a model with Immune to Influence attacks a Performer then the Immune to Influence model must take the Irresistible Wp > 12 Duel. Reference: Thread: Does Rst: WP = Wp Duel? Thread: wp duels.help please..... Malifaux Errata (Version 1, January 2010): Immune to Influence (p.7) Differences with Armor and Object I never really thought about the differences between Armor and Object until I saw a reply by Wodschow and there are some subtle differences. Armor # is an Ability which reduces Dg (Damage) by the given number, but never below 1. Some attacks will ignore Armor. Object # is a Characteristic which reduces Wd (Wounds) by the given number, but never below 1. Currently no attacks will ignore Object. When Dg is inflicted it is first reduced by the Armor. Then the Damage becomes Wd and is reduced by Object. However, some attacks inflict Wd which Armor does not reduce. Only Object will reduce Wd. Reference: Core Rulebook: Common Abilities List - Armor (p.72) Rising Powers: New Characteristics - Object (p.34) Thread: Mannequin, Object and Armor (Wodschow's Reply) Fixing Mannequins Old Wording: Update: The Fixable ability has been added to the extra errata. Under the new wording a Mannequin can nolonger fix itself and other friendly Showgirls may only fix Mannequins within 2". Reference: "Friendly" question Coryphee & Lost in Dance Lost in Dance won't stack with itself so don't use it twice. Reference: Core Rulebook: Stacking Spell Effects (pg 65) Talents, Spells, Triggers, and Line of Sight Book 1, p.24 Malifaux Errata (Version 1), p.1 By default all Attacks, Strike Actions, and Spells require Line of Sight. Most of the Showgirl's Actions (such as Colette's Illusionist) are not Attacks and do not require Line of Sight. This means Colette's Illusionist, Cassandra's Dance Partner & Understudy, and Coryphee's Dance Partner & Dance Together, can be used if you don't have line of sight. However, some actions such as the Performer's Mesmerizing Action are attacks when targeting enemy models. Oddly enough, when targeting your own models with the Performer's Poison Gift it is not an attack and therefore does not require Line of Sight. (This is probably just a rules quirk. If this is incorrect then a correction with the relevant rules is more than welcome). Also, Triggers do not require Line of Sight and are not attacks, so Colette's A Blinding Flash trigger does not require Line of Sight either. Note that in the Does Colette's illusionist ability require LoS? thread below they refer to Illusionist as an Ability when it is really an Action. Reference: Core Rulebook: Strike Attack Sequence - Details (pg 54) Core Rulebook: Spell Basics (pg 62) Thread: Does Colette's illusionist ability require LoS?
As someone new to this game, it is unclear to me what the $15 Rulebook in the online store actually contains since there is no description. Does one need all three books to play with the newest models? Also, it is unclear as to which one of these rule books is the one available as a modified version in the PDF download. Is the PDF all the rules? Does one still need the expansion, Rising Powers, in addition to the PDF that is available in order to play with the newest models? Even though I am new to gaming with minis my boyfriend is not and even he was confused when seeing three books at our local game shop. Since the game is new to the store the employees don't know much about it either (especially since all books come in shrink wrapping). I'm very excited to get playing this game, but we both just need to know which rules we need for what. We're pretty sure he picked one of the original starter boxes and I picked one of the newest, and we don't want to sit down to play to find out we are missing rules for my starter set. Thank you!