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C3G Strategy - October 2019

Posted October 19th, 2019 at 08:38 PM by HS Codex

C3G Strategy Guide
Foot Clan Ninja
Author: Lazy Orang


I love the 2003 Turtles cartoon that I watched when I was a kid, so I’ve been wanting to review a TMNT unit for a while now. The Foot Clan is one of the more intriguing and evocative units found in that range, so let’s take a look, shall we?

Analyzed Statistics

Left Box Breakdown
Species – Human (only really allows them to boost adjacent civilians)
Uniqueness – Unique Squad (4 squad members)
Class – Ninja (allows them to bond with Hand Ninja, receive a move boost from Karai’s Ninja Leadership, and be moved by Hun’s Foot Clan Alliance)
Personality – Devout (believe what you will, this does nothing)
Size/Height – Medium 5 (manoeuverable, can use ladders, and can be affected by some beneficial powers—e.g. Carry—but also vulnerable to some enemy powers, like Graviton’s throws)

Being a unique ninja squad allows for some significant synergies and interactions, and ones that will likely have a large impact when using these guys.

Statistics Breakdown
Life – 1 (it’s a squad, what do you expect?)
Move – 6 (swift)
Range – 1 (melee)
Attack – 3 (weak: average for a squaddie)
Defense – 3 (vulnerable: average for a squaddie)
Points – 155 (expensive for a unique squad)

Their stats are okay, but not exactly impressive, especially when you see that price tag. The powers will need to do a lot of the heavy lifting to make these guys worthwhile.

Powers Breakdown

Out of the Shadows
Once per round, after revealing an Order Marker on this card and before taking a turn with the Foot Clan Ninja, you may roll the 20-sided die once for each Foot Clan Ninja no longer in play. If you roll 9 or higher, return that Foot Clan Ninja into play by placing it on an empty shadow tile or any empty space within 3 spaces of another Foot Clan Ninja you control. You may not return more figures into play with this special power than the number of enemy figures on the battlefield. Figures placed with this special power may not be placed adjacent to an opponent’s figure.

Okay, wow. This is the power that makes these guys incredible. Once per round, that’s a 60% chance of returning for each individual fallen ninja. That’s pretty amazing, and with proper tactics and timing, you can ensure that your swarms of Foot last far longer than they reasonably should. We’ll discuss how to achieve this later, but just keep this power in mind: it’s critical.

Tactical Advantage – Extremely High.

Ninjitsu
A Foot Clan Ninja can attack with his normal attack at any point before, during, or after his normal move as long as he is on a space where he could end his movement. A Foot Clan Ninja can move through all figures and is never attacked when leaving an engagement.

Though not quite as big a deal as the last power, Ninjitsu is also incredibly helpful when playing the Foot. Phantom Walk is already nice, but adding the ability to attack when moving makes it amazing, since they can dart in and out of combat, strike and retreat, etc.—if there’s somewhere they’d be safer or more useful after striking (perhaps to avoid gumming up your army’s movements, or to slow down the enemy’s), you can attempt to move them there after attacking. In addition, if only one space to strike a given enemy can be reached (say, because the enemy’s holding a chokepoint), normally only one ninja would be able to engage and strike, but, thanks to this power, one ninja can strike then dart away, and another ninja can rush in to take his place. Rinse and repeat until all ninja have struck. It’s a very subtle power, but you’ll find it useful in a variety of different ways.

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 can be found in a previous article.

As they’re fairly weak individually and can come back, any individual Foot ninja is no more than a pawn, but because they can keep coming back, as a group they’re valuable—try not to lose the whole squad too quickly and try to treat one of them as a knight.

The Way of Shadow
Out of the Shadows is the key ability of the Foot Ninja—this is clear from even a cursory reading of the card, but what isn’t as clear is how best to make use of this special power. It can only be used once per round; you roll for all presently destroyed Foot Ninja when you roll, and you need to reveal an order marker on their card to do so. While the requirement of revealing an order marker may not seem like a big deal to start with, it’s actually massive—as a unique ninja squad, the Foot Clan Ninja can bond with the Hand Ninja. All together, that’s seven mobile ninja rolling three attack dice (unmodified) each turn, which is actually a really impressive swarm force ... but you can’t call in reinforcement Foot Ninja while doing this. This gives you two options:
  1. Forget about bonding and just put your order markers on the Foot Clan Ninja—the benefit of this strategy is that you can use Out of the Shadows at will, with no need to pre-plan. If you’re running low on Foot Ninja, or the round’s about to end anyway, roll for it, which makes it easier to keep your Foot around longer—sadly, it also means that your map control and offensive output is no more than average, at best, and you lack other ninja on the front line to potentially screen and distract from your Foot Ninja—conversely meaning they’re more likely to get picked off if your opponent has multiple activations or multi-attacks; or;
  2. Play them with the Hand Ninja but occassionally throw the Foot an order marker. The benefit of this is that you can use the Hand Ninja’s bonding to swarm with masses of ninja as I described earlier; as such, you can actually manage to pose a reasonable offensive threat through sheer weight of numbers and actually achieve some map control. The issue here is that you can’t just respawn Foot Ninja on any turn you choose to: you’ll have to plan ahead and place an order marker on them on the turn you want to respawn them, and, on said turn, your offensive output will be reduced.

All told, the second strategy is, in my opinion, perhaps trickier, but superior: the Foot don’t quite have the strength to hold a line on their own, they need the Hand’s support to be truly effective.

Now, how best to do this? Well, first, let’s talk about timing the use of Out of the Shadows. This may just be me, but I like to throw them order marker 1 on each round if I only have one or two Foot Ninja remaining. The advantage of this is it’s more immediate—you don’t have to think ahead to later in the round. While that may sound lazy, it’s actually sensible: the further ahead you try to predict how the round’s going to go, the higher the chance of your getting it horribly, horribly wrong. In my opinion, no matter how good a general you are, the less you have to speculate, the better, at least in this case.

Also, I’d strongly suggest doing your best to keep one of your Foot Ninja towards the back. This doesn’t necessarily mean sitting in your start zone—in fact, I’d discourage that, since, if this ninja’s the only one left, other ninja won’t be able to appear on the front lines, unless you’re playing on a map with copious amounts of shadow. (Side note: if playing on a map with lots of shadow, which is admittedly a fairly big if, remember that you can respawn a Foot Ninja on shadow as well as near other Foot Ninja, which can be useful for outflanking your opponent and striking unprotected support figures.) I don’t even mean that this ninja should avoid engaging in combat ... just that he should avoid prolonged engagement. Remember Ninjitsu? Make use of it: strike, break away, retreat, avoid getting bogged down in combat. While I’d say this is true for all Foot Ninja (unless you’re specifically trying to tie down an opponent—Foot Ninja are expendable enough for this to be worthwhile) you should especially do so with one of them, because if all four of your Foot Ninja are cut down before you can use Out of the Shadows, then that’s it: no more reinforcements. Avoid this for as long as possible—it’s a waste of their potential. Use strategic placement and tactical retreats, as well as the intervention of your Hand Ninja, to keep at least one Foot Ninja alive for as long as humanly possible. Oh, and if you find yourself facing a single attacking hero with no multi-activation capability in endgame, don’t worry about this as long as you’re starting the round with four Foot Ninja—they’re pretty cheesy in this specific situation, and a pain in the arse to actually put down.

Foot Friends
Okay, we’ve been over how to use the Foot most effectively, now it’s time to look at some of their better pairings. I’ll be focusing on figures that fit into their synergy web—as a result, most of these will be ninja or assassins who can, as a result, also bond with the Hand Ninja you’ll almost certainly be taking alongside the Foot. Note that there are loads of strong ninja/assassin heroes who are worth taking in this sort of build—too many to list. I’ll only be listing the ones I feel provide a specific benefit to your swarms of faceless, disposable ninja.
  • Hun – Now, having just said that, I’m going to immediately go to the one guy in this list who isn’t a ninja or assassin. Hun’s a solid bruiser of a crime lord, and, as a crime lord, can bond with the Street Thugs. However, there are two notable things about him: 1) he can make a second, boosted attack if you have other ninja, brawlers or criminals engaged with his target, and 2) if he inflicts a wound with one of his attacks, you can move as many ninja as you rolled skulls up to 3 spaces. That’s some pretty nice free mobilisation there. I’ve found an assault in waves—ninja (Foot and Hand) to open, then Hun and Street Thugs, followed by more ninja (possibly backed by a hero)—makes for an effective strategy, especially if some of your ninja survive the initial wave long enough for Hun to take advantage of them to trigger his Purple Dragon Beatdown.
  • Leonardo – As well as having some pretty awesome stats for his price—and Double Attack—Leo’s Ninja Focus allows you to add 1 to your roll for d20 powers on any ninja card you control—that includes the deeply important Out of the Shadows. That’s a nice boost (though admittedly not amazing), but you will be rolling for it quite a bit, and if you include other ninja with d20 powers (such as his fellow Turtles, Cyrax or Mortal Kombat Scorpion), this is suddenly feeling more useful. It does feel a bit weird to me that Leo synergises with the Foot, though ... best not to think too hard about that. The fact that Turtle Power, his leadership power for his brothers, is factored into his cost makes this less of an attractive pairing than it might be, but he’s still pretty good.
  • Karai – This one’s fairly simple: not only is she a good, mobile bonding hero with an okay long range attack and a stronger double attack once she closes in, but Karai’s Ninja Leadership power adds one to the move of all other ninja you control—that’s all Foot Ninja, Hand Ninja, and all ninja heroes. One extra movement point may not sound like much, but it adds up when playing squaddies. If you’ve ever played Marcus Decimus Gallus in classic ’Scape, you’ll know how good this is.
  • Donatello, Kirigi, Noob Saibot and Scorpion (Hanzo Hasashi) – I’m roping these guys in together, because they all provide something very similar, though in somewhat different ways; they’re all bonding ninja/assassin heroes who can move opponents’ figures, whether with Don’s Anti-Grav Gauntlet glyph, Kirigi’s Kyoketsu Shogi, Noob Saibot’s Blackhole Teleportation and Scorpion’s “Get Over Here!”. Which of them you should pick depends on what else you need/want them to do for your army and what your budget calls for, but the ability to rope/teleport/throw an enemy hero to low ground, strike them with the hero and Hand Ninja from height, tie them up and then swarm them with Hand and Foot next turn is quite deadly. Note that any human, mutant or mutate with such abilities (such as, say, Magneto), is viable for this role if you’re willing to invest in the Hand Mystics to brainwash them.
  • Shredder – Last but certainly not least, we have the Shred-head himself. Shredder’s key power, Antagonising Presence, is the ability to add one to the adjacent attack of all figures within 4 clear sight spaces of him, and subtract one from their defence against adjacent figures ... all figures—yours and your opponents’. While this may seem like a wash, with a swarm of ninja, it really isn’t. With the number of attacks you’ll be able to bring to bear, the boost to your attack and penalty to your target’s defence will really add up, and your ninja, though they’ll die in droves, likely won’t die much faster than they would normally. Remember, their defence isn’t great anyway, and they are highly expendable; especially the Foot, as they can come back! Even attacking Shredder himself in melee is going to hurt, thanks to his Ruthless Counter Strike. Just make sure you keep one Foot Ninja alive, as explained earlier, and keep Mr. Oroku Saki safe from being sniped or killed with specials; if you do so, this swarm can slaughter all comers.

Closing Thoughts
Forget “Turtle Power”—“Foot Fury” is the order of the day! Go now, young ninja, and lead the Foot Clan to the greatness it is destined for. Until next time, may the dice gods bless you with victory!

(Disclaimer: don’t forget Turtle Power at all. The TMNT are actually awesome, and one of my favourite teams to play, but this article isn’t about them. Simply wanted to clarify that. Umm ... Turtle Power?)
Total Comments 4

Comments

Old
Taeblewalker's Avatar
Nice article. I see you're pretty much using the format we used years ago when I was active in the reviewers circle.
Posted October 19th, 2019 at 10:43 PM by Taeblewalker Taeblewalker is offline
Old
Lazy Orang's Avatar
It's a bloody good format!

Thanks, chap.
Posted October 20th, 2019 at 11:03 AM by Lazy Orang Lazy Orang is offline
Old
MrNobody's Avatar
Great read, as always!
Posted October 20th, 2019 at 11:45 AM by MrNobody MrNobody is offline
Old
IAmBatman's Avatar
Nice article! Might be worth thinking about bringing them with some of the Heroes who can put shadow tiles on the map as well (though I forget how many of these are released!).
Posted October 20th, 2019 at 05:33 PM by IAmBatman IAmBatman is online now
 
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