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Lists to Counter King's Empire?


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Hi all,

There are a lot of KE players in our meta, so I was hoping to start a thread about lists that work well against them. I have seen this earlier thread here already, but it isn't so focussed on list-building, and it tends to deviate away from direct discussion about Abby.

My understanding is that our faction will never out-shoot KE, never out-melee Cult, and never out-attrition GH, but, in a sort of rock-paper-scissors style, we can do at least two of these three core mechanics (shooting, melee, attrition) better than whatever faction we are fighting against.

If this assumption is correct (and maybe it isn't), I suppose we can definitely out-melee KE (assuming those pesky Rifle Core aren't in Glory and shooting point blank!) and out-attrition them. Using this logic (and the models I have on hand), one potential list I was thinking of looks something like this, with a focus on melee and attrition:

2 Commanders

Kassa Okoye (used as KE Envoy) + 25

  • Bigger is better - 2
  • Electric Megaphone - 1

Prince Unathi + 25

  • Mine Control Device - 1

Mehal Safari w/ Flare Gun Asset - 9

Mehal Safari w/ Experimental Rocket Asset - 9

  • Engineer - 1

Steel Legion w/ Active Defenses Armor Asset - 12

Dreadnought w/ Chemical Foggers Armor Asset - 7

  • Gramophone Amplifier - 1
  • Massive Furnace - 1

Crow Runners - 6

The purpose of this list is just to run everything up the field as quickly as possible; hopefully, the Steel Legion draw fire but both Mehal units rush up the board. All three units are there to protect Unathi as he dishes out reinforcement tokens alongside the Dreadnought. Kassa advances and also dishes out tokens. If I'm correct, at a minimum I'm dishing out 3 reinforcement tokens a turn; 4 if Unathi can get to glory (or even 5 if Unathi is in glory and uses the same morale action twice). Hopefully, that's enough to protect the units as they go up the field and clash with the KE ranks. 

 

I don't have the models for this list, but I also thought it might be fun to run:

Lord of Steel + 25

  • Toughness - 1

Prince Unathi + 25

  • Toughness - Free
  • Mine Control Device - 1

Bosotho Cavalry - 4

Bosotho Cavalry - 4

Mech Infantry w/ Flare Gun - 8

  • Engineer - 1

Mech Infantry w/ Experimental Rocket - 8

  • Engineer 1

Electrocutioners w/ Discuss Grenades - 10

Steel Legion w/ Active Defenses Armor Asset - 12

 

I have no idea whether this would work; maybe it's an awful list. But if KE Rifle Corp move 7", and I deploy far forward enough, perhaps Bosotho Cav can jam up the enemy gunners (with 4 fire teams on 120mm bases, they'll definitely block line of site and engage multiple enemies) on the very first turn so that all the other units can move safely up the field. I chose Mech Infantry because in Glory, the titans make the fireteams ARM 10 within 3". Electrocutioners have high speed and can probably do a second turn Rush order to engage enemy fireteams in melee. Unathi can reinforce as necessary, and LoS can get behind enemy lines and wreck gunner units from behind.

 

What do you guys think? What have you run against KE that has paved the pay to victory? :)

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I've not got a list as such, I try and adjust things based on the operation and enemy commander picks. Also not got vast experience with this matchup yet.

I always like mech infantry, and I do believe they can outshoot KE, though keep the titan behind the infantry as is remarkably easy to kill (and thus flip KE to glory). In most cases I try and take electricutioners too, their glory side is immense being able to move rapidly across the board to claim objectives or just pulse targets down. They also get 10vDf attack with a 3MV +1str

Commanders and Titans I will always take max assets on them. Makes them tougher to kill, and per scrip, I feel they are worth so much. eg "Deflector shield", neither Belle or Edmonton really want to take a Str5 hit if used to target the commander (each a good source of accurate) which means the damage will fall onto the rest of the squads. From here you can reinforce injury, especially if Mehal. Or "Radio Transmitter" to add a suit to a duel maximising the effects of the fewer actions of Abys.

Kassa with KE envoy is nice, can then use behind enemy lines with South Wales Borderers, a very resilient unit which can force engagement (often being able to spawn in melee range). Other alternatives I feel are much more likely to die before reinforcing to KE shooting. This will then force tactics use and/or card discards to eliminate.

I've not considered the use of Bosotho for body blocking, however at 5 defence and armour I can't imagine they are going to block for long then allows KE to glory off them. If I took the second list I'd get rid of 1, add 2 engineers and 2 more points into commander assets.

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I'm lacking a lot of experience with the match up, and I'm a King's Empire player, but I can say without a doubt that Electrocutioners wreck our shit, double of those and you should be more than fine. Thing is, we win in the ranged game, but mobility is so huge in this game that it doesn't really amount to much on the grand scheme of things. Use cover to your advantage, should be very easy in general or at the bare minimum have a unit doing body blocking duty to ensure cover for everything behind them in case the table is very open. Get those Electrocutioners into Glory ASAP and just do the teleport dance, if anything moved forward or Infiltrators are on the other side, the first jump should get you in combat with them and a second jump will put some damage and let you engage something like a Royal Rifle Corps unit. Royal Riffle Corps are satan personified if they are in glory since they become one of the most damaging melee units in the game, but if engaged outside of glory you are suddenly looking at Stat 4 models that struggle to do much of anything to the electrocutioners, suddenly they cannot be Obeyed by Charles Edmonton, suddenly you need to spend Ta to at least desingage them and let them due things. It utterly cripples their flow and also completely strands them in their side of the table letting you do objectives with other units.

The King's Hand is a piece of work, but his range is short outside of his Symbol of the Realm, so he won't efficiently be able to help deal with the electrocutioners unless his units are very close together. King's Empire defensive stats in general are pretty shit for their cost unless we are talking about Borderers, Dragoons or Rifle Corps, so the pulses should decimate all other units. Basically, get into their face fast and hard and they will have a very hard time responding, that they are so dependant on killing to go into Glory also means that getting them engaged really lowers their chances of getting any solid hits in.

Of course this is assuming a standard King's Empire force, if you face off against a ton of Borderers and Dragoons along with the Rifle Corps, they will have some units with actual Melee bite or if they have an Abyssinia envoy and bring in some Seffari or Buzzzaw guys, in that scenario, I would imagine jamming the electrocutioners in there hard can really backfire since they would probably just get swarmed and taken down.

Finally, unless the King's Empire is using Kassa Okoye to generate cards, their card draw and Ta generation is frankly shit, so you should be able to overwhelm them simply by having more cards and Ta than them most of the game and making them have to make hard choices with their meager resources. Do be very careful with where you place your commanders though, the False Flag Stratagem can absolutely cripple you if you only have one unit to pass damage to and it also happens to be the one that gets controlled, since getting a few hits in and being out of range for passing damage back to them (or not caring if chain activating Edmonton immediately after) can spell a very dead Commander on your side.

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Also going to add that a Mech Infantry with a prototype and adjunct has crazy card generation capabilities on top of being able to pump out really good ranged damage with the potential to remove reinforcement or inspired tokens with the Walker's target.

As Razhem said, getting into melee fast and hard cripples KE, so Electrocutioners, Steel Legion and Lord of Steel are all good for gumming up the works while providing some serious damage. One Mehal with an Adjunct should be more than enough to keep whichever backline commander you take safe from KE's ranged options if they ignore whatever you throw into them.

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