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Hello fellow im just curious is to how would you guys go about making a competitive Arcanist list so we can wear our proud blue color around to the Malifaux events. I'm aasking as a newcomer and have only tried out 1 box and i love your game so much i want to get into the comp side of Malifaux but kinda need your help to get started

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Malifaux doesn't really fit the 1 list is competitive for everything type of game. You can probably build a fixed list that can compete in all games, but you would do much better in the long run to customise the list to match the objectives. 

I think any of our Masters can compete, so my advice would be pick a master, learn to play them, and then consider where you struggle. Then look at ways at either solving those problems or making sure those problems don't show up. 

 

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If you are looking to start out playing a single master that can be competive in most pools you are probably looking at starting with Sandeep. Marcus can probably get the job done as well if you prefer the aesthetics of Beasts.

With Sandeep, you’d probably want to start out with his crew box, the Ironsides crew box, a box of wind gamin, and an Arcane Effigy. That should get you a reasonable  starting point for Sandeep that you can build on with additional purchases once you’ve decided what you like. 

Starting Marcus, I’d probably grab his box, the Ramos box, Malifaux Raptors, and a couple of beasts you like the looks of. Get something small and cheap like Hoarcats and something that’s a bit beefier. A lot of folks grab a second Sabretooth so that they can hire one and have Myranda turn into one. The Blessed of December is a decent alternative to a second Sabretooth. The problem you might find with Marcus as your first master is that he’ll have you buying a lot of Beasts that none of the other Arcanist masters can use. Sandeep can run into the same issue with Academics but it’s not as bad since he doesn’t tend to hire outside of the faction as much.

Whatever you end up doing you’ll end up with multiple Arcanist masters since almost all of the boxes have models that work well in different crews. Having more masters also gives more options for what you can choose to bring into a game after you know how the board will be laid out, whay objectives are available to score from, and which faction you are playing against. 

Since you’ll end up with multiple masters anyways you could always just pick the master that appeals to you the most and start building from there. It might not be super competitive but just starting out you are probably going to get your ass handed to you by experienced players even if you are bringing the best stuff in the faction. You might as well like the crew you are playing while you are losing.

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31 minutes ago, 7thSquirrel said:

More or less +1 to what @WWHSD said, though why Ramos with Marcus? Strat/scheme coverage? Howard?

It's mostly Howard and Joss. You could totally skip them and spend the money on other models but those guys work with pretty much any master and I hate not recommending for new players to start with two master crew boxes.

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2 hours ago, WWHSD said:

If you are looking to start out playing a single master that can be competive in most pools you are probably looking at starting with Sandeep. Marcus can probably get the job done as well if you prefer the aesthetics of Beasts.

With Sandeep, you’d probably want to start out with his crew box, the Ironsides crew box, a box of wind gamin, and an Arcane Effigy. That should get you a reasonable  starting point for Sandeep that you can build on with additional purchases once you’ve decided what you like. 

Starting Marcus, I’d probably grab his box, the Ramos box, Malifaux Raptors, and a couple of beasts you like the looks of. Get something small and cheap like Hoarcats and something that’s a bit beefier. A lot of folks grab a second Sabretooth so that they can hire one and have Myranda turn into one. The Blessed of December is a decent alternative to a second Sabretooth. The problem you might find with Marcus as your first master is that he’ll have you buying a lot of Beasts that none of the other Arcanist masters can use. Sandeep can run into the same issue with Academics but it’s not as bad since he doesn’t tend to hire outside of the faction as much.

Whatever you end up doing you’ll end up with multiple Arcanist masters since almost all of the boxes have models that work well in different crews. Having more masters also gives more options for what you can choose to bring into a game after you know how the board will be laid out, whay objectives are available to score from, and which faction you are playing against. 

Since you’ll end up with multiple masters anyways you could always just pick the master that appeals to you the most and start building from there. It might not be super competitive but just starting out you are probably going to get your ass handed to you by experienced players even if you are bringing the best stuff in the faction. You might as well like the crew you are playing while you are losing.

THANK you so much for given me a point to start off with that i know can be somewhat competitive! this is a long post for a random dude on the internet and yet you used time for me i thank you VERY much the malifaux community is amazing!!! <3 hope the Ferdinand will work with Marcus x)

 

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9 minutes ago, Allfather3rd said:

THANK you so much for given me a point to start off with that i know can be somewhat competitive! this is a long post for a random dude on the internet and yet you used time for me i thank you VERY much the malifaux community is amazing!!! <3 hope the Ferdinand will work with Marcus x)

 

 

Schemes and Stones did a series of articles on building each faction on a budget that you might find useful. They budgeted about $100 (not including books, and tokens, and such) and tried to get the best bang for the new player's buck. The tiers they reference are more about how good a starting point into the faction you get for that than it is how tournament level competitive it is.

This is the Arcanist article. It's a little dated, there's been a new book and a couple of errata since it came out but I think it's still worth a read for someone interested into picking up a faction..

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Budget is a huge factor.

Malifaux does not really play into a "one list to take, one list to play them, one list to crush them all together".  The paper-scissors-rock equation runs on multiple different levels so you take faction-master 'x' vs faction master 'y' but then they take models 'a' to negate your models 'b' and then there is the schemes and strats and add in the terrain.  You need to be flexible.

So what.....

First set your budget, certain masters are simply cheaper to play both in efficient crew and maximum crew pool (I'm looking at you Marcus, don't you bring home another Gupp, we can't afford to feed all the others already, is that a Hoarcat kitten in your pocket?).

Second what is your style, what do you like the look of, do you play aggressive or passive?  I believe you always play better when you play comfortable, regardless of respective tier.

As WWHSD said the Arcanist on a budget article is a solid place to start.  For that matter the Schemes & Stones archives are a solid beginning, most, if not all, of the Arcanist masters have had a feature episode.  Now also as WWHSD said note that S&S podcast episodes are all a bit dated, erratas and new releases change things, but in increments so the core information remains applicable and valuable.

Now, my take

Upper tier, generally powerful masters with good flexiblity

  • Marcus is great, huge range of models and adaptable play style.  But correspondingly very, very expensive to buy into if you want to maximize him, many very strong Beasts are out of faction and several are only available in expensive boxes outside of secondary market.
  • Ramos is durable and as a premier summoner his crews can cover most tasks with numbers if not specialty.  Also can be costly, for any summoner you need the extra summons models, but he is expensive to start as opposed to a sub-faction money sink (I'm looking at you again Marcus, no a Dawn Serpent is not a pet and feeding it Gupps is not an answer to two problems at once).
  • Sandeep is another summoner but no where near as capable of summoning the numbers as Ramos (Sandeep is capped in his summons numbers to three).  Very, very flexible master, probably the best all rounder still in Arcanists if you can select from a range of models, but this does include some expensive out of faction purchases (for some reason Sandeep collects Malifaux's errant school children, including the reanimated ones).
  • Ironsides is a solid master, tough, durable and has nice M&SU synergy.  Good selection.
  • Rasputina the mistress of blasting is a solid master and her crew synergy (Frozen Heart) is a collection of amazing and deadly models many of whom have a place in a lot of Arcanist crews.  Good selection.

Lower tier, while all Malifaux master/crew combos have a paper to rock match up these are the ones who are tricky and finicky to play.  By no means weak but they punish mistakes far more readily than they reward good play, tough to maximize.  Having said that they are frequently more 'side-ways' players and can really confound opponents who rarely see them played and see them played well even less.

  • Colette, has great scheme marker play and can be a nightmare to play with her tricks and weird vectors, nice in-crew synergy.  But is very fragile and with recent releases has some really problematic hard counters to her already tricky durability.  The mistress of misdirection really works when you do, but if you can't fool your opposition then she crumples to a hard slap in the face.
  • Kaeris is a flying quasi flame angel, she is somewhat fast, somewhat durable, somewhat synergistic, somewhat tricky, somewhat dangerous and somewhat average.  The main problem here is that while she can do everything, and if done right can do it well, it all requires real effort to do well.  It takes a lot of work to make the flaming choir sing, it does not take much to see the fires of hope snuffed out viciously.
  • Mei Feng is a shifty, bouncy, ephemeral master that removes an opponents crew around them in a flurry of melee - at least when she works right.  Good anti-range but vulnerable to melee heavy crews and also attrition builds - but has some rezzer hard counter options at least.  She is dual faction which means she can also play as Ten Thunders, this provide some cool options but can also make her more costly to get her range of model options.

If it was me, starting out, I'd get Ironsides and Ramos.  The Ironsides box is great and is also very important to any later purchase of Sandeep.  The Ramos box provides huge synergy for Ironsides, is very important to any Arcanists, and is plain good.  You can from there expand Ramos by buying some spiders for summoning and you'll find many models which are really useful to both Ironsides and Ramos crews.  This is the cheapest way of fielding two very good masters which also have nice coverage to play against most of the enemy-crew/scheme/strat/terrain combos you'll see.     

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There was a time when the advice to start the arcanist faction was "Buy the master you like and the Ramos box. "

Ramos's box has a great mix of durable and hard hitting models and cheap scheme running  models. All masters can get a lot of use out of what he contains regardless of what your game actually is. Its certainly a very good way to learn how to play arcanists.

Will you use the ramos box in all your competitive lists, no, but I don't think there is anything you would use in all your lists (Well at least not the way I play anyway)

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14 hours ago, Allfather3rd said:

<3 hope the Ferdinand will work with Marcus x)

Ferdinand Vogel/the Beast Within? I think there will be some good synergy between the Beast Within and Marcus, yes. ^_^ The miniatures were only recently available to purchase so we're still waiting for a large cross section of players to get a lot of experience with him (them?).

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4 hours ago, Scatterbrain said:

Ferdinand Vogel/the Beast Within? I think there will be some good synergy between the Beast Within and Marcus, yes. ^_^ The miniatures were only recently available to purchase so we're still waiting for a large cross section of players to get a lot of experience with him (them?).

I don't think Vogel is out yet. He was listed as a February release but I haven't seen one in the store where I play and all of the websites I look at still have him showing up as a pre-order.

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9 hours ago, WWHSD said:

I don't think Vogel is out yet. He was listed as a February release but I haven't seen one in the store where I play and all of the websites I look at still have him showing up as a pre-order.

Oops. Even fewer players own him than I first thought: zero. :lol:

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 8/3/2018 at 10:35 PM, dancater said:

Budget is a huge factor.

Malifaux does not really play into a "one list to take, one list to play them, one list to crush them all together".  The paper-scissors-rock equation runs on multiple different levels so you take faction-master 'x' vs faction master 'y' but then they take models 'a' to negate your models 'b' and then there is the schemes and strats and add in the terrain.  You need to be flexible.

So what.....

First set your budget, certain masters are simply cheaper to play both in efficient crew and maximum crew pool (I'm looking at you Marcus, don't you bring home another Gupp, we can't afford to feed all the others already, is that a Hoarcat kitten in your pocket?).

Second what is your style, what do you like the look of, do you play aggressive or passive?  I believe you always play better when you play comfortable, regardless of respective tier.

As WWHSD said the Arcanist on a budget article is a solid place to start.  For that matter the Schemes & Stones archives are a solid beginning, most, if not all, of the Arcanist masters have had a feature episode.  Now also as WWHSD said note that S&S podcast episodes are all a bit dated, erratas and new releases change things, but in increments so the core information remains applicable and valuable.

Now, my take

Upper tier, generally powerful masters with good flexiblity

  • Marcus is great, huge range of models and adaptable play style.  But correspondingly very, very expensive to buy into if you want to maximize him, many very strong Beasts are out of faction and several are only available in expensive boxes outside of secondary market.
  • Ramos is durable and as a premier summoner his crews can cover most tasks with numbers if not specialty.  Also can be costly, for any summoner you need the extra summons models, but he is expensive to start as opposed to a sub-faction money sink (I'm looking at you again Marcus, no a Dawn Serpent is not a pet and feeding it Gupps is not an answer to two problems at once).
  • Sandeep is another summoner but no where near as capable of summoning the numbers as Ramos (Sandeep is capped in his summons numbers to three).  Very, very flexible master, probably the best all rounder still in Arcanists if you can select from a range of models, but this does include some expensive out of faction purchases (for some reason Sandeep collects Malifaux's errant school children, including the reanimated ones).
  • Ironsides is a solid master, tough, durable and has nice M&SU synergy.  Good selection.
  • Rasputina the mistress of blasting is a solid master and her crew synergy (Frozen Heart) is a collection of amazing and deadly models many of whom have a place in a lot of Arcanist crews.  Good selection.

Lower tier, while all Malifaux master/crew combos have a paper to rock match up these are the ones who are tricky and finicky to play.  By no means weak but they punish mistakes far more readily than they reward good play, tough to maximize.  Having said that they are frequently more 'side-ways' players and can really confound opponents who rarely see them played and see them played well even less.

  • Colette, has great scheme marker play and can be a nightmare to play with her tricks and weird vectors, nice in-crew synergy.  But is very fragile and with recent releases has some really problematic hard counters to her already tricky durability.  The mistress of misdirection really works when you do, but if you can't fool your opposition then she crumples to a hard slap in the face.
  • Kaeris is a flying quasi flame angel, she is somewhat fast, somewhat durable, somewhat synergistic, somewhat tricky, somewhat dangerous and somewhat average.  The main problem here is that while she can do everything, and if done right can do it well, it all requires real effort to do well.  It takes a lot of work to make the flaming choir sing, it does not take much to see the fires of hope snuffed out viciously.
  • Mei Feng is a shifty, bouncy, ephemeral master that removes an opponents crew around them in a flurry of melee - at least when she works right.  Good anti-range but vulnerable to melee heavy crews and also attrition builds - but has some rezzer hard counter options at least.  She is dual faction which means she can also play as Ten Thunders, this provide some cool options but can also make her more costly to get her range of model options.

If it was me, starting out, I'd get Ironsides and Ramos.  The Ironsides box is great and is also very important to any later purchase of Sandeep.  The Ramos box provides huge synergy for Ironsides, is very important to any Arcanists, and is plain good.  You can from there expand Ramos by buying some spiders for summoning and you'll find many models which are really useful to both Ironsides and Ramos crews.  This is the cheapest way of fielding two very good masters which also have nice coverage to play against most of the enemy-crew/scheme/strat/terrain combos you'll see.     

 I will  also have to thank you for this epic explanation that made me undérstand, i didnt understand malifaux was like this <3 thanks

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