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C3G Strategy - July 2018

Posted July 16th, 2018 at 04:11 AM by HS Codex

C3G Strategy Guide
Hawkeye (Kate Bishop)
By: Lazy Orang


A newer figure, and one of my favourite C3G characters to be released this year, Ms. Bishop can be as deadly as she is sarcastic ... but how do you best make use of this exceptionally cheap and versatile archer?

Analyzed Statistics

Left Box Breakdown
Species – Human (slight synergy and a few weaknesses, but nothing major or relevant here).
Uniqueness – Unique Hero.
Class – Rookie (this synergy is still new and developing, and somewhat on the weak side, but it does exist in the shape of Speed, Vision (Jonas), and Patriot).
Personality – Sarcastic (instantly causes me to warm to the character, but has no mechanical effect).
Size/Height – Medium 5 (manoeuverable, can use ladders, and can be affected by a number of beneficial powers such as Carry, but also vulnerable to a number of enemy powers, like Magneto’s throws).

Being a rookie is not always essential to make use of, but it is certainly valuable to her. Aside from that, being medium, and therefore able to be carried, is remarkably useful for a character like Kate, though being human can make her frustrating to fit into Star-Lord builds.

Statistics Breakdown
Life – 4 (average, especially for a human).
Move – 5 (average).
Range – 8 (crack shot).
Attack – 3 (below average).
Defence – 4 (average).
Points – 140 (reasonably cheap).

The main point of relevance here is the range of 8—it may not quite place her into the same league as Green Arrow, but it still means she can outrange and snipe most figures extremely effectively. Three attack is on the low side, but on a figure with this range this can be easily remedied, if you even feel the need to. She won’t last long when forced into a melee fight, though, and allowing that is wasting her abilities and the low—but not insignificant—number of points sunk into her.

Powers Breakdown

Not Your Sidekick
After revealing an Order Marker on the Army Card of a Unique Archer Hero or Unique Rookie Hero you control within clear sight of Hawkeye and before taking a turn with that figure, if Hawkeye is not engaged, she may immediately attack an opponent’s figure with her normal attack. After using this power, you may not attack or take any additional turns with other figures you control other than that Archer or Rookie.

Hate to tell you this, Kate, but you are a sidekick ... or at least mostly. Unlike most sidekick-style powers, this only allows her to attack rather than take a full turn. Though the inability to reposition can be annoying, her range allows you to use her as an offensive threat despite this setback, especially if you can position her well. The ability to provide supporting fire to your main hero only gets better when you look at her next power. (Tactical Advantage – High)

Pinning Shot
If Hawkeye attacks a non-adjacent small or medium figure with her normal attack and rolls at least one skull, until the end of your turn, the defending figure may not move and rolls 1 fewer defense die against any other attacks.

I said it’d get better, didn’t I? This power is really useful for setting your opponents up for a strike: shoot someone with Kate, and then let your bonding hero hit them when they’re pinned in place, with a weaker defence and unable to escape. There’s another way to use it, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves; let’s move on to the next power. (Tactical Advantage – High)

Double Shot
After revealing an Order Marker on this card and attacking a non-adjacent figure with Hawkeye’s normal attack, she may attack one additional time.

Okay, Kate, I concede: you don’t have to be a sidekick. The ability for her to double attack when taking her own turn and attacking from range gives her more options when taking her with a bonding option (or more) and means that doing so isn’t a necessity. It’s also necessary to note that this, like Not Your Sidekick, pairs nicely with Pinning Shot; her second attack gains the bonus from her first, and she doesn’t need to worry about figures with dodge powers zipping out of range from her second shot. Goodbye, Flash ... (Tactical Advantage – High)


In Depth Analysis

For the purposes of this strategy article, I will be using a slight variation on Agatagary’s chess-based unit evaluation system; for those unfamiliar, it goes as follows:
  • Pawn Class – expendable: units that can be useful, but are not worth enormous trouble to protect; examples include: Fire Ant Swarms, HYDRA Agents and Bucky.
  • Bishop Class – more useful than a pawn, but still somewhat expendable; examples include: Black Cat, Shocker and Michelangelo.
  • Knight Class – units that are interestingly powerful and can have a significant impact on the game in and of themselves; it is advisable that they be kept alive, but if absolutely necessary they may be sacrificed. Examples include: Red Skull (C3G), Doctor Octopus and Hawkgirl.
  • Rook Class – units that almost inevitably have a significant impact on the game, and whose death should be avoided as much as possible; examples include: Captain America (C3G), Wonder Woman (I) and Deadpool.
  • Queen Class – devastatingly powerful or important units that should be protected at all costs; examples include: Magneto (II), Thor and Darkseid.
  • King Class – (my addition) fundamentally important units whose leadership or synergy is necessary to the cohesion of your army, and who should be protected at all costs. Examples include: Professor X, Kingpin (II) and Nick Fury.

Kate Bishop, is, fittingly enough, a bishop: she’s excellent as a sidekick, as a sniper, as a ranged multi-attacker, and as a support piece, and is a nicely valuable figure for her cost, but she’s still not on the level of some of the higher-costed characters.

The Lone Archer
The simplest—though perhaps not the most intuitive—way of using Kate is just using her as a stand-alone hero. I could say that this is a waste of her abilities, but honestly, I don’t think that’s fair: if you pair her with Captain America (note: all references to Captain America in this article refer to the C3G version rather than the Hasbro version) or Star-Lord, then two attacks of four at a range of eight, with the Pinning Shot bonus on the second attack if you hit the same target, is actually quite effective for a 140 point hero. You’ll want to keep her protected, but she’s actually a pretty damned effective ranged multi-attacker for her low cost. If you can somehow stack attack bonuses (getting her on height, popping her next to Bane etc.), things get even better.

The Young Avenger
I’ll be frank with you here: the Young Avengers (rookie) faction is still somewhat in the research and development phase. They have some solid characters, and even some synergy, but they lack the cohesion to contend with more solid teams such as Teen Titans, X-Men or LexCorp at comparable points costs at present. I am certain this will change with time; however, right now, the Young Avengers still need some help, and are probably best used as a small team acting as part of a larger army rather than as an army in their own right.

Who do you pair them with, then? The obvious and best choice (no prize if you shouted his name—identifying this is nothing special) is Captain America: his Avengers Assemble boost is always invaluable. If you’re taking rookies as part of an Avengers build, you’ll likely want to make use of some of their existing synergy, which is where Kate comes in. Her ability to provide a bonus attack of four from long range, as well as pinning someone for the rookie she’s bonding with to strike, makes her invaluable in a Captain America/rookie build. Using her with, for example, Noh-Varr in this build, allows him to follow up her attack of four with an attack of six, while the defending figure subtracts one from his defence if they both target the same character—a pretty solid “set ’em up, knock ’em down” strategy there. Never forget, though, that Kate still has the Double Shot power: even when she’s paired with bonding options, there are plenty of times it’ll best serve your interests to put an order marker on her: both so she can make the second attack and so she can reposition.

As well as thinking about what Kate can provide for her fellow rookies, however, it’s worth thinking what her fellow rookies can provide for her. Vision (Jonas) can provide bonus movement when a hero’s killed and Speed can recover her order markers when she’s killed, which are both solid, useful bonuses (free movement is particularly nice for Kate, due to the nature of Not Your Sidekick), but in the end, it’s Patriot you want to look out for. A solid fighter himself, Patriot’s Rookie Tactician power makes him Kate’s best friend. Park him next to her, and he adds one to her attack and defence. This makes her better when used for support fire, and, quite frankly, if you throw in Captain America on top of that (and why wouldn’t you?), and she can just twang away with two attacks of five at a range of eight, plus the Pinning Shot bonus, and that’s without height! You don’t need any more rookies to make this pairing worthwhile.

Draw Bows Together!
Of course, tookies aren’t the only figures Kate can bond with—she can also act as a sidekick to archer heroes. This actually works very well: the Green Arrows are definitely solid if you can boost their stats with Captain America, two long ranged snipers are better than one, and it’s a well-known mathematical formula that Captain America + Kate Bishop + Oliver Queen + Bane = death. (If you’re open to it, then using Syvarris in that combo could arguably be even more effective and cheaper than Green Arrow, but don’t let C3G know I recommended mixing ...)

One of her better combos, though, is probably the second Clint Barton version of Hawkeye—you know, the chap with the Skycycle. Though he can’t activate another hero with Skycycle Passenger if she’s been activated with Not Your Sidekick, he can ferry her around to pockets of height with ease, taking shots himself—shots that, if using them with Captain America (really, Captain America is the common factor here—whatever else you do with Kate, he’s invaluable), can easily go up to an attack of six if he can claim height. This is the only way you can reposition Kate on a turn when she’s being activated as a bonding option through Not Your Sidekick, and being carried around by a flier makes it easier to move to the best possible positions with ease. If you want Kate to be hitting from height, this is the best way to do it, and they’re also a great team for hit-and-run, especially if you choose to use Clint’s Sky Shot over his normal attack; it may lack his normal attack’s raw power, but it allows him to fly three spaces away, with Kate in tow, and also subtracts two from the defender’s defence; that’s minus three when paired with Pinning Shot! Goodbye Flash indeed, my friends: goodbye Flash indeed.

On the Wings of an Angel
If you like the idea of flying Kate to height but don’t like the idea of going all in by pairing her with her namesake, that’s okay; there are other ways of providing Kate with her own personal ferry system. As the heading may have indicated, this method comes in the form of Angel (Warren Worthington III). Not only can he fly her to height, but, if she ends up getting struck by a normal attack, he can fly her away to safety as a free action after the attack’s resolved; I said at the start of the article that Kate loathes getting bogged down in melee, and this is an excellent way of avoiding that. (Angel’s also good at repositioning your other forces in the midst of combat, but that’s more going into Angel strategy than Hawkeye strategy.) Also, it’s worth noting that this is the first combo for Kate I’ve talked about that works in a Star-Lord build as well as a Captain America build: Kate’s solid as a Guardian of the Galaxy as well as an Avenger, but none of her bonding options are Ragtag Tactics compatible alongside her (except for Syvarris, but I’m supposed to ignore him because he’s classic, so shush ...). Angel is compatible (though admittedly, using up both your human and mutant slots hurts in a Star-Lord build).

You could also use Beast Boy (Pterodactyl) as an alternative to Angel if you want to give Kate a lift to height, but he’s more fragile and, most notably, can’t be used to extract her effectively from difficult situations the way Angel can with his Guardian Angel power, so it’s very much a poorer alternative. Then again, he’s only 40 points to Angel’s 90, so definitely a budget option, and doesn’t use up your Mutant slot in Star-Lord builds, so there are reasons to use him.


Closing Thoughts

In the end, Kate Bishop is an exceptionally versatile and effective ranged combatant, useful in a wide variety of ways, situations and army builds, and one of the most valuable figures to have come out of the last wave—at least in my opinion. Oh, and don’t forget to draft her with Captain America! Until next time, may the dice gods bless you with victory!
Total Comments 3

Comments

Old
L0B5T3R's Avatar
Great article! I recently had a friend play a Green Arrow (Connor AND Oliver), Black Canary and Kate army. Black Canary got wasted by the massive curse glyph and the team still did solid work. She is a lot of fun. Thanks for the tips!
Posted July 17th, 2018 at 07:32 AM by L0B5T3R L0B5T3R is offline
Old
Scapemage's Avatar
I just recently playtested using a team with all archers on it, and it was my first time using Kate. I sent her up for free attacks but she got taken out early. Despite this, Merlyn managed a massive comeback against the Atlanteans, thanks to those couple of wounds Kate did early on. Great stuff!
Posted July 27th, 2018 at 08:55 AM by Scapemage Scapemage is offline
Old
IAmBatman's Avatar
Nice read! I don't recommend mixing, but I'm always happy for folks to play how they like!
Posted August 1st, 2018 at 02:45 PM by IAmBatman IAmBatman is offline
 
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