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Desolation Engine - worth having?


Essexkiwi
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I've heard the Desolation Engine isn't popular so wondering where it has a niche in an Amalgam keyword crew? 
Weighing up between buying a super cheap M2 box of Abominations with M3 cards or forking out 3 times as much for an M3 box just to get the Deso Engine.  Do I need the big fella? 

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I’d say it’s nice to have, but not really necessary. Since M3E started I’ve successfully summoned it...once? Still, that may be because my opponents know that it’s sitting there, waiting to murder them. I’d say it’s good as a psychological threat, but I doubt you’ll be sad if you don’t have it. 
 

That being said, if they errata it and suddenly it’s great, you might kick yourself. 

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4 minutes ago, J4bberw0ck said:

I Since M3E started I’ve successfully summoned it...once? 

Is that because it's rare to end up with 3 Abominations on the table as that relies on summoning them, as there are better crew picks?  

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19 minutes ago, Maniacal_cackle said:

I've heard people suggest it is pretty broken in Public Enemies (since it downgrades and isn't worth much when killed), but that strategy won't be around much longer anyway.

"Broken" is maybe a little generous, since it isn't really all that hard to kill or deal with while it's on the table. That aspect to it is a redeeming perk that means it's lowish risk to bring an otherwise suboptimal model more than it is something making it truly strong on the strategy, and adds to Ashes and Dust making it tricky to score points (but between the usual suspects of Rusty and Marlena and a Scavenger it's not like the opponent won't have options).

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For some reason whenever I have taken the Desolation Engine (read: both times) my opponent has brought Amina and made it hit my own models with necrotic decay. Last time it died before it could activate turn 1. Hilariously, the resulting abomination was absolutely crucial in killing Kaeris turn 1.

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I treat it as a summon only, there’s way more important things to spend stones on in a Levi list. When hired it’s a bit slow and easy to hit for my taste. 
 

As for why I’ve only summoned it once, my opponents tend to be very scared of it appearing in their lines, so they prioritize my aboms. It’s actually a good thing, as I generally don’t care if aboms die. If I can summon one, I will, but I’ll never include them in my game plans. This way, every attack that goes towards one is wasted, but if you don’t attack them I’ll summon a much scarier mirror monster in your face. 
 

“That’s a hell of a catch, that catch-22.”

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  • 3 weeks later...

Desolation needs a lot of support to be a useful model.  It's a great attrition piece if it can get stuck in before losing all its wounds.  Between the built in heal on attacks, servant of dark powers, and the entropy healing off of levi, it can drain tank quite effectively.  Its main weaknesses are a lack of bonus action and low defense, but the built in trigger and htw can still make it trade favorably.

I've had some success with bringing von Schill along to support it.  Getting a leap in combination with the Herald move on SodP means it can get quite far up the board, resolving a lot of the issues the model otherwise can have.  Without the positioning support to allow it to quickly start getting value from flurry and entropy, it definitely can struggle.

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