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How I Learned to Stop Worrying, and Love Colette


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So something happened between v1 and 2E, where I fell out of love with Colette. Perhaps it's the fact that she lost her reactivate, or her slow to die, or her mannequin replacement, perhaps it's just a playstyle difference that I can't seem to overcome. In that vein, however, I've decided I want to love Colette again, and it's just a matter of looking at what she brings to the table, and diversifying around her. Her abilities synergize well with Showgirls of any rank, but they also work on all minions.


-So perhaps a mixture of showgirl models with a presence of rockstar minions is what I'm missing.



Strengths and tricks:

Defensive Triggers: With "Now you See Me", and a scheme marker, or death defying and a model cost5+, she is very resilient. She may not be, doesn't die but gets to burn a soulstone to heal resilient, but she's still a pretty tough broad. 


Scheme Marker Manipulation: I use to think it was just because she and her whole crew use scheme markers to fuel their abilities. And that's definitely true, but her 8" aura that allows showgirls or minions take a 1 as a 0 is totally baller.


Offense:  Her best attack is a 0 action. If you get an upgrade, she can use it twice into and out of melee, with a great ca vs either wp or df. This thing is reliable. And with a mask she can cast it again at 8". Use your artificial soulstone, or know you've got the card to cheat and win, and that'ls pretty reliable too. 


Battlefield Presence/Manipulation: Almost all of the rest of her abilities are focused around manipulation: Positioning, buffing, and out of activation action.  Her second attack has a trigger that gives a disguise aura. She has an ability to push a model (friendly anything) and then have them perform a 1 action (with a reactivate then sacrifice trigger.). She has away to teleport a model up to 14" away (provided there is a sheme marker there). She can use this on herself, so she can be damn near anywhere. 


Doves: And then there are the doves. Use to be that you had to sac a soul stone to make a dove. Use to be it was a 0 action, which fought with your reactivate- so you could only get 1 dove per turn. Use to be that a showgirl could just burn it like a soulstone. Well things change.


Doves can now sacrifice themselves to give a friendly model (any friendly) a :pos to all casting until the end of turn (if you have something like a oxfordian mage who's about to get super magic-y), or a :pos to df duels (if you're afraid that bodyguard target is gonna need to weather a little bit more this turn...) or is can give them a :pos to damage flips, for when you get that beater in Juuuuuust the right position. 


Note these are all 'till the end of turn. And you can sac multiple doves to the same target to super charge them. Give a mage a postive twist to cast and damage, and watch the sparks fly. 




So. We have a master that is able to survive, manipulate the battlefield, both power level wise (deflecting enemy charges and prompting high potency models to get more out of them), do a little bit of damage herself, and create mobile buffing stations. What does she really need to win? 




She's got a lot of stuff that makes other people better. So what she really needs is models that are able to get the most benefit from her ability to make them better. When they opening all of these abilities up to friendly or friendly minions, they increased her versatility by a ton! So my new goal is to find those models that are able to take the fullest of advantage of Colette's generous help.


Oxford Mages (The Magic show): 

You give a henchman warding runes and it increases their resiliance. But the real coolness is that a) their 0 action can net soulstones. There are very few models and upgrades in the game that can create soulstones. Mages are on, Colette is another. Put them together, and want not for the stone. They also have a ca6 2/3/4 with some amazing triggers potentially built in (For instance, Burning, slow, Pushes, or armor passthrough) which they can cast on their turn 3 times with furious casting. And Colette can make them cast it s'more. Add to those 4+ attacks a positive twist to ca and/or damage, and you're lookin' pretty beastly. Pew pew. 


Gunsmiths (The Wild West show)

Great when paired with Mages who can place burning on a model to light 'em up for "The Hard Way" (by the way... can I say how much I love "Easy Target" over "Hey, you're the one who's on fire"? 'Cuz I do.)


You're not gonna get the positive twist to ca like the mages get, but you also have access to a better damage track (2/4/6 with experimental) and can get a double positive against burning targets. Spend some time getting a target painted early in the turn, and then have a dove give the smith a buff that'll make it count. And then have Colette reposition him and make it hurt s'more. 


Willie (The Pyrotechnic Show)

See you've got a bunch of scheme markers there. What if I told you that was actually a mine field? William brings a lot of stuff to the table. Passive damage incurred by him walking. The ability to force duels without LoS. Another way to drop burning. A way to move friendlies away from an exploding enemy, and a way to turn the large number of scheme markers within 8 of him into a 3" pulse of death. Throw a manaquin in the mix and he can start poppin' off a bunch of scheme markers at range, just flooding the field with explody goodness. Set him up at a choke point, and watch 'em scramble.


Mechanical Rider (The Pony Show)

There's been a lot of talk about the rider. 12 stone model that can move, an evolving armor (that's not armor, so it's harder to bypass!), the ability to summon arcanist constructs, and potentially give something reactivate? Pretty rad. Not to mention the SH6 attack that spews out scheme markers like candy, and allows for an extra bit of card draw. So, it's giving Colette cards to use or discard for an extra S.S. (if she gets the soulstone manipulation upgrade), more scheme markers near weakened enemies for jump points. Both great. But it's also giving her cheap models that both help with activation control, tie up enemies, can be reactivated with prompt without as much fear as doing it to your higher SS more important models. Why yes, I would like an extra manequin. Or an ice gamin that's been weakened. Which I will now shoot into engagement with and blow up. It's a big investment, so the returns have to be good. 


And much much more!

The number of henchmen and enfocers that can't benefit from "Friendly Minion" type abilities is pretty high, but the return you get for the more broad abilities is as high- consider giving The Captain (Sergeant Pepper's Magical Mystery List) a pos twice to casting for airburst, or damage for the relic hammer. Or Joss. Or Howard. Or run a total beast list with Myranda and a bunch of animals. The more I come to terms with what she can actually do, the more exited I get about the sheer number of lists she can run. Fixed master variable list? The woman can be anything she wants.


Promotional Considerations Brought to You By:

The Miner and Steamfitter's Union. You run a list of Mages, Gunsmiths, Willy, and bring a Johan to go with? Colette may not be a M&SU, but the Captain, Joss, and the Firestarter are. Colette can stay alive on her own dime, and just make any/all of those models better through extra actions, and empowered actions. 


In conclusion, the days of my two favorite lists are mostly over. I don't see me playing pure showgirls. Of course I should supplement, but it just feels too specific. I'm not allowed to play my favorite Colette list (Colette and the M&SU Allstars- Kaeris, Willie, Gunsmiths, Kang, Johan). But the future of Colette is still exciting. Adapt and evolve. The show much go on.


Wall of text over. Thoughts?

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The way I see Colette these days ia that she is all about orchestrating and directing the rest of her crew rather than being the soul eating death machine of 1.5. So Prompt are completely central to what I use her for. Its a rare activation where she doesn't do it at least once.

Aside from that I would say don't get too hung up on scheme markers. The crew likes them a lot, but you don't 'need' that many. Although they do increase the crews flexibility.

And I agree, playing pure showgirl is a needless limitation. My two favourite inclusions are Howard and an Acolyte, both plays a to the crews strengths, while helping with some of the weaknesses.

But Colette is so flexible and offers a wide variety of playstyles that you really need to experiment and make her your own. For instance, I don't use Doves or Mannequins and hardly ever cast Disappearing Act, yet it was clear from the beta that those are central to some other players. She isn't who says was in 1.5, but she is a lot more flexible and varied and offer so many possibilities that are just begging to be tested.

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Seems to me that Colette can Prompt (with the reactivation trigger) two Coryphee. They get two activations each (plus the benefits of Prompt) and the last one to go summons the Duet, which then gets to activate as well, but is not sacrificed at the end of the Turn. Have I got that wrong?

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First of all, thanks for a very nice and useful post :) it made me more interested in Colette. 

i tried Colette the other day, for the first time since wave 2 got official (i had gotten in a beta game with her before that when her rules very rather different) and managed to get a 10-8 win against Som'er in squatters. Not sure i used the performers as well as i could have and picking upgrades on Colette is tricky (i went with Arcane reservoir and A Lady's Secret). i mainly used Colette for prompt (on Cassandra and a rail golem ^^) and some scheme markers and sabre tricks and did okay. She's very different from before. Which upgrades do you like for her?

i was really impressed with Cassandra. i took Imbued protection and Smoke and Mirrors on her and with df7 and southern hospitality she took huge amounts of attention and still lived til the end of the game. me winning most of the initative flips helped of course, but she's really good with Imbued protection i found :) Smoke and mirrors was nice too but maybe 3ss upgrades on her is a bit much? Will have to try her out more. She'll certainly find her way into other arcanist crews too. However getting breath of fire of with ca5 wasn't too easy. Kind of feels like you have to play a 12 or a 13 and sac a dove for +dg flips if you want to get the blasts off or am i missing something?

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Cabaret Choreography

Since one of my main ways Colette supports her crew is through Doves, Cabaret choreography is at the top of the list. Trick of the hat is the only way to get more, past hiring them at the top. I don't usually hire all three, for reasons I don't understand yet- but I'll get there, I'm sure.


Looking at "All Together Now": I haven't really used it yet- though. Looking at it now, with showgirls and minions within 8 getting to place scheme markers with a (potentially unused) (0) action, and the mannequin allowing them to be pitched to people who didn't end in the right place, her two action could potentially net a LOT of actions. Situational, but there's a lot of potential energy there.


A Lady's Secret

Can I Have a Volunteer is an amazing trigger- as does the idea that she can push someone across the board to a scheme marker, and not discard it. 


Nothing Up My Sleeve

Good by itself, great if you want to also take arcane reservoir. This ability was one of my favorites in 1.5, for one, it let her be nigh unkillable with her slow to die action, and secondly, it opened up lists for henchman support: Meaning I could bring Kaeris in a Kaeris crew led by Colette who is just funneling SS's down her fiery fiery gullet. That option is for sure still there- though the fact that she gets three AP means she's still going to be much more active. It also gives you the option of pulling a SS to cards if you're really starved for material on an important turn.


Shell Game

The Shell Game (0) isn't amazing. It can give your doves and Mannequins an out of activation push which is nice, but it means you're not Sabreing or placing a scheme marker to keep you alive. The surge on Prompt (if you're going for a pure prompt list) is nothing to be sneezed at. You can Artificial Soulstone in the suit, or if you have mid books you can swap them out for "what's behind door number 1".




I find myself usually taking a lady's secret and Cabaret. If I'm playing a strong henchman- Joss, Cassy, Captain... and want to try letting them lead the crew/charge, I'll take Nothing up my Sleeve- And in that case I may swap out my Lady's Secret for Arcane Res. A typical turn would be discard two crappy cards, Summon a dove, Prompt someone nearby, Saber toss if someone's close, place a scheme marker if someone is threatening.





Seems to me that Colette can Prompt (with the reactivation trigger) two Coryphee. They get two activations each (plus the benefits of Prompt) and the last one to go summons the Duet, which then gets to activate as well, but is not sacrificed at the end of the Turn. Have I got that wrong? 


I don't think you do... I had to go back and check it wasn't Sacrifice this model at the end of their second activation, but it's end of turn, and you're saccing them to summon the duet anyways. So I think you're correct. That's a little dirty! :P


That's 2 first activation, 1 prompt, 2 second activation time 2, - one for dance together 9 ap. And if you give them a dove each before the big push, they could be coming in at a pos twist to attack from blades, and damage from doves.

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The best way to get Breath Fire to work is to focus. The way I usually use Cassandra when I have her in position is to use her Nimble to shuffle forward, the focus and then Breath Fire, and then use the trigger to get back into cover. Gives you quite a long range with decent odds of getting some last templates and some positional flexibility.


As for Upgrades on Colette, I use quite a different set than EntrepeNinja does. Since I don't use Doves I don't find any value in Cabaret Choreography. All Together Now is a marginal ability at best, and the summoning Doves never worked well for me, and I'm not particularly enamored with the Doves anyway. So that's an upgrade I just never use. Similarly with A Lady's Secret, it's not suitable to my playstyle. I don't even use Disappearing Act every game, and while getting an extra Sabre Trick attack would be nice it is not worth 2SS and an upgrade slot to me.


Nothing Up My Sleeve is an upgrade I frequently take, but seldom use. Usually I just got better things to do with her AP, so it gets used once, maybe twice a game. Still, for 1ss the flexibility it offers is pretty good.


Shell Game. The (0) is useless to me as I don't use the models it affects (I don't think it's very good even if you do), but the trigger is pretty good, and at 1SS it's almost always worth considering. Often times I'll Artificial Soulstone into it.


Practiced Production is an upgrade I really like, and I've use it on Colette in the past. I now favour putting it on Angelica, but it's still worth considering.


Other options are Arcane Reservoir and Imbued Energies. Usually I got Reservoir, because the extra card can be very useful. And with the Avatar out, that one looks worth thinking about as well, as well as Seize the Day.


My setup for the last couple of games have been Shell Game, Arcane Reservoir and Nothing Up My Sleeve on Colette, Practiced Production, and then possibly Imbued Energies on either Cassandra or Howard. I'll consider taking Smoke and Mirrors if I got schemes that reward me for putting scheme markers forward where Cassandra might be able to drop them.

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Sure, she is a position piece first and foremost. She have a (1) action, Give them an Encore! that can push your own models around. Being able to get 5" of extra movement can be amazing in the right situation. Secondly, her trigger on her hooked cane allowed you to push anyone around, giving you the potential to push enemy models quite long distances. And let's not forget she have a paralyze trigger on her shooting attack. For 6ss Thats a lot of utility. And while she doesn't have many wounds, Disguised means she can't be charge so is that little bit extra annoying to deal with.

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Angelica? Yes, she moves models, both friendly and enemy (with her trigger on her cane).

But don't discount her range attack, especially if you got a mask for the paralyze trigger. And she is a cheap model to put an upgrade on, I like using her for Practiced Production. It allows some good flexibility.

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Yeah, Angelica is good if you have the space for her. Her 6 soulstone cost has got to be made up in pure positioning. I think the push on hooked cane is something I originally dismissed, but looking at it closer, it could be pretty boss. If you throw scheme markers with a mannequin, or drop them while engaged, you could be coming in at combat 7, and the damage track isn't awful (maybe use a dove? :P). But yeah, the push is where it's at. The push has no upper cap- so that push can get miiighty long. I may need to try her in a wings of fire kaeris crew!



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I played my first game with Colette today, and I must say she was really fun. I played a 35ss game with her, a performer, gunsmith, and 2 corphee. I corphee were absolutely awesome, and the defensive triggers on Colette frustrated my opponent (perdita) to no end. Colette certainly plays very differently than any other master I have encountered. I really feel that she can function pretty well with a small model count, and the movement/scheme marker tricks are going to take a lot of getting used to.

My thought in a higher point game is to also use miss step to help out with the basic face smashing which the crew is lacking.

Hope to keep posting as a get some more games in and can provide more insight.

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Miss Step is very good with Colette. In fact she is my go to hitty model. Being able to flurry deep in your opponents half on turn 1 if you so choose is quite fun. But I want to try out Killjoy with her at some point too.

But Colette like elite models in general. Because she gives out extra actions it helps of those actions are good actions.

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I'm not a big fan of the duet. I think you are probably better of with the coryphee being individuals most of the time only changing into a duet when needed rather than as a matter of course. And I don't think in either form they make great primary combat models. I get my primary combat power from Howard Langston, Cassandra and a December Acolyte these days. But it kind a depends on what exactly you need done.

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