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Kyle

Waldo's Weekly - Serving Up Summons

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Hey Wyrdos,

Waldo spent the week scribbling a bunch of strange symbols with chalk and candlewax on the walls and floor of the office. After explaining to him that is definitely not the way summoning works (though there has been a lingering sulfur smell as of late), he finally agreed to stop vandalizing the place as long as we told him how. 

So, before we go check on that smell, we’re going to take a look at how summoning works in M3E.

Summoning has always been a cornerstone ability in Malifaux, and often, it’s one of the strongest abilities that a player can bring to the table. Not surprisingly, many of the best masters in first and second editions were those who capable of summoning in new models. 

One of the goals for M3E was to keep summoning as the powerful and unique ability that it is while reigning it in and preventing a summoner from completely running away with a game. To accomplish this, we approached summoning from a couple different angles. 

Let’s use Dashel Barker, the Guild’s newest Master, as an example. 

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There’s a lot of fun stuff on Dashel’s stat card, but for the purposes of this article, let’s focus on his Call In Reinforcements Action.

The first thing that jumps out about the Action is that it’s Once per Turn, which is a restriction that can be found on every Master-level summoning Action. 

Previously, in second edition, the best thing that a summoner could do was to spam their summoning Action as much as possible to flood the board with models. The rest of the summoner’s card was almost secondary to that action. Just about everyone has played a few games against Kirai and Nicodem where all they did was spam their summoning action to churn out as many new models as possible. 

Surprisingly, most of our playtesters ended up enjoying the summoning Masters a lot more after this change. By removing the burden of having to create and maintain a summoning engine for maximum efficiency, it freed these Masters up to do other things with their Actions. Once Dashel has called in a new Guard, he’s free to move around or shoot at his enemies without feeling like he’s “wasting” those Actions. 

While Dashel can only summon one model at a time (most likely due to Guild budget constraints), some of the other summoning Masters, such as Dreamer and Asami, can summon multiple models with a single Action. To do so, they just add the Cost of all of their summoned models together when determining the Action’s TN. This allows these Masters the option of summoning in two weak models in favor of a single stronger model. 

Each Master-level summoning Action also Attaches an Upgrade to the summoned model. Dashel Attaches the Patrolling Guard Upgrade to his summoned Guard, so let’s take a look at that Upgrade now. 

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Patrolling Guard is Plentiful (2), which means that a player can only have two copies of that Upgrade in play at any given time. If Dashel already has two summoned models with an Attached Patrolling Guard Upgrade, then when he attempts to summon a third model, he can’t Attach the Upgrade (due to exceeding its Plentiful restriction) and the summoned model doesn’t enter play. That’s somewhat restrictive, but if Dashel is his Crew’s Leader, the Plentiful Restriction increases to Plentiful (5), which greatly expands his summoning capabilities. This helps to ensure that the power level of summoning Masters is kept in check when they’re hired as supplemental Masters in a Crew. 

Crews in M3E can have multiple Masters, by the way. If you want to splash some Guard summoning into a Witch Hunter Crew, for instance, you just hire Dashel like a normal model: you pay his Cost of 15, plus one if he doesn’t share your Leader’s Keyword (which in this example would be “Witch Hunter”). This has been working out pretty well in playtesting, and it’s super fun to have Dashel summoning guardsmen into a battle to support his Witch Hunter allies. 

Looking back at the Patrolling Guard Upgrade, you can see that after it Attaches to a model, that model gains Slow. In second edition, there were a number of summoning restrictions in the book that always seemed to catch both new and experienced players off guard, such as summoned models showing up with Slow and not being able to take Interact Actions on the turn they arrive. In M3E, those restrictions have been moved onto the summon Upgrades themselves; after Dashel summons a Guard model, for instance, it gains Slow, but it has no restrictions on its ability to take Interact Actions. 

Because M3E uses Upgrades to track which model is summoned, this lets us treat summoned models a bit differently than normal, purchased models. For instance, the Exorcist has a trigger that flat out kills a model with an Attached Summon Upgrade, making it quite the counter to Crews that do a great deal of summoning. 

All in all, these changes to the summoning rules have allowed summoning to remain as a strong option for Crews in M3E while still ensuring that there are enough checks in place to keep it from becoming the absolute best strategy in every situation. 

We’ve also balanced the number of summoners between Factions in order to ensure that each Faction has roughly the same amount of access to the mechanic. Arcanists have Sandeep Desai, the Bayou has Som’er “Teeth” Jones, the Guild has Dashel Barker, the Neverborn have the Dreamer, the Outcasts have Tara Blake, and the Ten Thunders have Asami Tanaka. The Resurrectionists, which have traditionally been the bastion of summoning Masters, have emerged in M3E with Kirai Ankoku and Albus Von Schtook as their summoning Masters (though Albus approaches the situation in a much more unorthodox manner than his peers). 

Since it’s the holiday season, we thought that we’d leave the topic of the next article up to you! What parts of M3E are you most excited to hear about? Let us know!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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How about Reva as the topic?

In the issue of trying not to have my cult leader hog all of the spotlight though, how about choose a Master or Henchman from each faction based on popular vote and reveal some models that share their keywords? My vote still goes to Reva of course...

 

Edited by TheJoyInGaming
Clarity
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I'd love to get a sneak peak at Euripides! Or maybe some of the new modelling process if that's something you're ready to share? I know some things are getting new sculpt and I'd love to hear how exactly that's being handled! Or maybe more Dead Man's Hand details? Like for instance in a tournament that allows them what faction the masters count as, since I don't think we've seen a faction marker on them yet.

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I really like how the summoning has been reined in a bit (Once per turn + the summon upgrade limiting how many summoned models you can have on the board).

I mostly play with one friend and we both play summoners (Nicodem for me, Dreamer for him), and I feel like it will be nice to have more variety in play for our masters than "summon as many things as possible". Plus games are long since we're adding new models each turn 😛

 

As for next week's preview, I would really like to learn more about the new masters and/or how existing masters changed.
Especially Albus Von Schtook (I'm really curious how the new resurectionist master will play since I might use him to "replace" Nicodem. Summoning via his students is intriguing).

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14 hours ago, Kyle said:

Since it’s the holiday season, we thought that we’d leave the topic of the next article up to you! What parts of M3E are you most excited to hear about? Let us know!

For next topics, perhaps things like:

_ Planned new crewboxes and other boxes (art & contents). Perhaps with the amount of new refs in the M3E.

_ Artworks for new masters & models (Eurdipides for example...)

_ Theme contents for those where the Beta is advanced enough to tell

_ How you built themes (content & option choices) & the design philosophy (for example is a theme built to play in all strats & schemes or be optimum in some of them to avoid all rounders)

_ Fluff evolutions

Happy Thanksgiving !

14 hours ago, Kyle said:

All in all, these changes to the summoning rules have allowed summoning to remain as a strong option for Crews in M3E while still ensuring that there are enough checks in place to keep it from becoming the absolute best strategy in every situation. 

These are very positive changes. Thx for sharing this news.

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Summoning is now a lot better resolved. I like the way it has been done.

For next topic I would love to hear about new crew boxes and maybe totally new models?

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4 hours ago, SoylentRobot said:

Does this Dashel replace the Dashel in Lucius's crew box? does that mean Lucius will get a new crew box or something?

Well this is the same character, so its quite likely that there will be a Dashel crew box and an altered Lucius Crew box at some point. Your current Dashel model is still Dashel so will be tournament legal (based on the fact I can still use my Metal guard captain as Dashel, and expect to still do so)

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It was hard to read the "Call in reinforcement" ability because the target of the ability is stated in the end of the text. You must read the whole text before you learn that scheme markers is the target. The special chase "friendly scheme markers" is even mentioned before you learn what the target is. 

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I can't rememeber what Monday Preview it was, but for every X Likes we would receive another information - an artwork, model preview etc. We shared the link on social medias and messaged them to our friends. The hype was through the roof!
I would love to see that happen again 🙂

  • Just like @yool1981, I would like to hear more about actual Box Sets.
    For example, are models going to be sold mostly in "Keyword Boxes"? Something like The Plague Cometh and Brotherhood of the Rat?
  • Are there going to be M3E Fate Decks on release date?
  • Is the first M3E book going to contain campaign rules? If not, is it something you are planning in the future?
  • Is there going to be an event during M3E launch?
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Hey, Tara has a last name now!  Sooooooo.... she's the Outcast "summoner" model.  Where does that leave Levi and Hamelin in the grand scheme of things with abominations, the stolen, and the various rats, especially if you're limiting summoned model types?  Overwhelming people with abominations and rats summoned from kills is kind of the point.

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I would really want to see the keyword system in use. I want to see an example on who the "core" pool of models a Master can hire. Preferable a Master that could hire cross faction. (And preferable with the guild involved :D )

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Love the look of Dashel, and the changes to Summoning mean I may not need to buy as many Guild Guards as I thought I was going to have to.  Hurrah, cos putting the lady one together is a pain in the backside!

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Summoning in the guild makes me happy, but I'm not half as amused by that as the idea of dashel rummaging through dead people's pockets looking for soulstones. 

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11 hours ago, Bakuriel said:

Summoning in the guild makes me happy, but I'm not half as amused by that as the idea of dashel rummaging through dead people's pockets looking for soulstones. 

Checking the belongings of convicts is standard  Guild protocol. You never know if one of those arcanist terrorist still has any bombs to endanger the brave people of malifaux. 

If some soulstones are found in the process, this only reinforces the guilt of the suspect. As  SS trade is strictly regulated, one can only asume those criminals have stolen them somewhere and it's the rightful duty of Guild officials to collect them and try to hand them back to the victim later.

Given the tragic death of a heroic Guild Member, it is the sad obligation of his or her commanding officer to secure the personal belongings for the grieving family at home. Thats the minimum one can do.

You see, you couldn't be father away from the truth, insinuating Master Dashal is "rummaging" random corpses for personal gains. He's a rightfull Hero of Malifaux, carrying out his duty regardless of the myriad dangers awaiting him.

Please contact your correction officer to freshen up your knowledge on Guild Protocol and Regulations.

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9 hours ago, Tors said:

Checking the belongings of convicts is standard  Guild protocol. You never know if one of those arcanist terrorist still has any bombs to endanger the brave people of malifaux. 

If some soulstones are found in the process, this only reinforces the guilt of the suspect. As  SS trade is strictly regulated, one can only asume those criminals have stolen them somewhere and it's the rightful duty of Guild officials to collect them and try to hand them back to the victim later.

Given the tragic death of a heroic Guild Member, it is the sad obligation of his or her commanding officer to secure the personal belongings for the grieving family at home. Thats the minimum one can do.

You see, you couldn't be father away from the truth, insinuating Master Dashal is "rummaging" random corpses for personal gains. He's a rightfull Hero of Malifaux, carrying out his duty regardless of the myriad dangers awaiting him.

Please contact your correction officer to freshen up your knowledge on Guild Protocol and Regulations.

The only thing that upsets me about this post is that I didn't think of it first. 

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So now summoning is a flat once per turn? I can't say I'm fond of this. Sure, it stops summoning masters from just sitting there making models all game, but it might have been more interesting, and allowed for more design space for 3rd edition going forward, if the number of summons possible per turn could vary depending on the master. This solution is too homogenous, IMO.

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3 hours ago, Blastaar said:

So now summoning is a flat once per turn? I can't say I'm fond of this. Sure, it stops summoning masters from just sitting there making models all game, but it might have been more interesting, and allowed for more design space for 3rd edition going forward, if the number of summons possible per turn could vary depending on the master. This solution is too homogenous, IMO.

The summoning action can be taken once per turn.  That's not the same as only being able to summon a single model per turn. I can see some Masters being able to summon multiple cheap, chaff units (Ressers, for example, or maybe Gremlins).  What the rule change does do, though, is stop a Master sitting at the back of the table summoning a horde of models, which is a good thing. 

 

There is also the matter of the other abilities that summoning Masters will get.  Dashel can summon 1 Guard a turn, but has abilities designed to buff and support the Guards around him.  That's where the variety will come with other Masters.

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Some masters can summon multiple models as a single action, seem to recall the Dreamer was mentioned  as one , seems like good moves again to me 

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7 hours ago, Blastaar said:

So now summoning is a flat once per turn? I can't say I'm fond of this. Sure, it stops summoning masters from just sitting there making models all game, but it might have been more interesting, and allowed for more design space for 3rd edition going forward, if the number of summons possible per turn could vary depending on the master. This solution is too homogenous, IMO.

The post explicitly states some masters like Asami and Dreamer can summon multiple models with one action.

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In addition to what everyone else is saying, if they really want a model to be able to spend more than 1 AP summoning, they could give it 2 different summon actions. So I don't think design space is limited.

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I second people asking about information on new boxes. Like are they going to be coming with new sculpts for old models (like the new Reva sculpt) and also new boxes for new models (like Dashel and Lucius getting separate boxes).

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