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Help vs Mei Feng


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Hey all

I'm still a fairly new player after trying several crews and styles in several factions

I'm kinda settled on guild mainly running perdita in a family list minus nino normally

Or sonnia crew mainly using the box set

All was going well

Untill I met mei feng and her vent steam abilities

How in the blue moon do you beat it?

I either can't shoot or cast against her or she slaps the living heck out of me in melee

Please help

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Samael and Francisco can put up a fight with Mei Feng. If you manage to get her burning, Samael's damage will really hurt.


If you are playing under 50ss games against Mei Feng with Sonnia or Perdita box sets just don't. If you play 30ss games and you both play well, she will likely win 9/10.

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I'm a big fan of Vent Steam, and I think that this is one of two handfuls of "hard counters" in Malifaux. I chuckle to myself if matched against Sonnia in Turf War.


Here's a few things I can think of, but nothing here will reduce the fact that you'll have to change something or else rely on luck to help you out:


  1. Don't play Sonnia or Perdita if you know your opponent is playing Mei. As noted above, Mei is "good" in melee, but she's a lot easier to take out there, particularly with a solid melee beater. Pick another Master, someone who brings more melee.
  2. Target other models. This is harder in Strategies that clump models together, so watch for it in Reconnoiter or Squatter's Rights. 
  3. Watch for the turn when she turns it off. It's a good ability, but if your opponent hasn't taken Vapormancy, at some point she won't have enough AP to do everything, and it won't be worth keeping on. That's your turn, but she'll probably be engaged so...this may not be great for shooting.
  4. Out-activation. I tend to activate her early in turn one, then late in turn two in order to maximize VSs efficiency, and this works perfect if I can out-activate my opponent so I can do Mei last and then apply VS again. If you out-activate your opponent and leave a good shooter, he'll be forced to use another AP to VS.
  5. Spread out yourself. This is more of the "achieve your schemes" advice, but the VS ball has to stay tight in order to protect everyone. If you spread out, Mei's crew isn't fast enough to stop you. Mei is super fast, so be careful not to provide to juicy a target to her, but her crew usually doesn't move much faster than Wk 4.
  6. If nothing else works, Focus and/or a Soulstone to give + flips. I think it's a waste of Soulstones and AP but it may be your only choice.
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Vent Steam is a pretty solid ability, but it either requires an action or a trigger on her melee.  If she's hitting on melee, try making her work for her hits.  She'll have trouble keeping Vent Steam up if you are forcing her to use a high  :tome or a soul stone every time she wants to get the trigger off.


Sonnia can deal with it a bit, as she gets  :+fate built in against targets with wp6 or more- which means Mei has to put considerable effort into venting steam to make casting difficult against her.  And Focusing isn't awful with Sonnia, because the  :+fate to damage can help you generate those  :blast , which is really where Sonnia's ranged power comes from.  And any blasts you DO get off are going to be devastating due to models clumping up under the steam.  


Hopkins can be a beast in close combat if you can set something on fire, Hunting Tools gets +2 damage from the target being on fire, +1 from a built in Critical Strike, and that's not even counting what he can do with soulstones or cards adding additional :ram.  I believe the number is minimum damage 7 (if that sounds good to you :P ).  If you've got the cards in hand, a counter charge against a burning target from Hopkins will floor most things in the game.  The biggest issue is having Hopkins in position for a key charge without his weak defenses and low movement getting in the way.  Pushes from Witchling Handlers, or the Judge are very helpful for positioning Sam. 


Executioners obviously can wreck things in close combat, especially Rail Workers who don't get their defensive trigger against him.  Once again pushes help here.


Death Marshal taxi service can potentially deliver Papa Loco right into the heart of the Steam Bubble for maximum  :pulse damage.


If your opponent is stacking the vent steam with Langston's steam cloud, you can shut that down with Dampening Field.


If you can get Francisco in there with Deistro, you may be at a :-fate or two from vent steam, but so are they... and your attack stat is probably higher- especially on Sonnia or Dita (9 or 7 respectively).


Sometimes you just need to administer the Guild's Justice up close and personal. 

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Oh, and set up terrain such that she can't clump AND get her points. Terrain set up is huge in this game, and this is one of those important moments. If she's rolling her steam ball around buildings and through severe terrain, focusing on playing defensive, then you have the movement advantage. With proper setup of terrain, her best bet may be to split her group to efficiently move through/around it, which gives you effective targets.


Then the Mei player is choosing the right things to keep in the steam. 


Alternatively, maybe if you set up terrain such that she doesn't have to VS in order to survive, you may get more windows to shoot. I played Asyouwish on Vassal a few weeks ago, and there was a building in the middle of the board that helped keep Mr Sniper Nino off my back, so I didn't have to vent as much. Which meant her other shooters actually got shots off.


(downside...the building gave me enough to avoid most of her other shooting as well...it's a balancing act, that terrain is. :))

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Nino with Hair Trigger if they've only Vented once. Also, Diestro. Have the Diestro model engage Mei and the Steamed vagrants and shoot them with everyone else. :-fate  's for everybody!


I do like having models that can cover weaknesses in the crew (like melee = an Executioner), and shoving them in the general direction of my annoyances, although his speed outside of a Death Marshall Taxi would leave much to be desired in Criid's crew. I usually take Lead Lined Coat on my fat boy so I'll probably be happier than a Piglet in slop when they release the Peacekeeper in plastic.


It's still a tough cookie to crack.

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