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Power Rankings Revealed II

Posted May 15th, 2007 at 10:02 AM by Jormi_Boced

The votes are in, and for this week of Power Rankings Revealed, the monkeys reign supreme! Gorillinators had the most interest from the poll in the Power Rankings Thread and the Ninjas of the Northern Wind came in second, so they are the two featured units of the month. While both squads are sometimes overlooked as tournament-worthy, one might be surprised to hear of their success stories on the battlefield. Once neglected as one of the worst squads in the game, the Gorillinators became increasingly popular with the release of the Nakita Agents. The Ninjas of the Northern Wind have enjoyed popularity ever since their release, but they are often seen as too D-20 oriented. Jormi_Boced looks to shed some light on how to best use the Ninjas, and spider_poison delves into the strategies and armies best employed with the Gorillinators.
Gorillinators

I must admit that when wave three hit the shelves, I was unimpressed with one of Vydar's latest recruits. Every store I visited had tons of the flea-bitten monkeys. The Microcorp Agents were of comparable cost, and their stats were significantly better at the time. I tried using a couple squads of Gorillinators in quite a few different armies, but they just never seemed to get the job done. After a short amount of time, the Gorillinators began to gather dust in my Heroscape bin. Then, with the release of wave five, I began to bring the monkeys back into some of my armies. I thought it was kind of weird that monkeys would bond with some of Vydar's female agents I didn't really want to know why, but I thought Gorrilinator Movement Bonding was a pretty good ability. After trying out a few different configurations with the Gorillinators, I started to warm up to the idea of using them again.

Strategies:

Nakitas, Nakitas, Nakitas. The Gorillinators were absolutely made to use in conjunction with the Nakita Agents. I'd almost consider the Gorillinators too ineffective to use without Nakita Agents, but a ninety point ranged squad is a rarity in Heroscape. With the Nakitas, however, the Gorillinators add a huge dynamic to your army allowing you to get a high return out of every order marker on the Nakita Agents. The Gorillas can then either hold glyphs or provide some decent firepower as they will more easily gain height advantage on your opponent. While rushing out Gorillas with Nakita Agents is generally a good thing, there are certain units they should avoid. Major Q9 eats monkeys for breakfast, lunch, and supper. If your opponent is activating Q9, you need to have units other than the Gorillinators to take care of him. Any ranged unit with a special attack spells disaster for them. Conversely, ranged units with low attack like Arrow Gruts or Aubrien Archers are easy pickings for the Gorillas. Gorillinators are much more specific in their match-ups, but with careful planning, they can do their share of damage. Other than the Nakita Agents, the Gorillinators have excellent synergy with Laglor and Raelin.

Suggested Armies:

400 Point Army:
2x Gorillinators
1x Krav Maga Agents
1x Nakita Agents

This army was used in Beantown last year by Heroscaper curseyoukhan. It ended up surprising the field as it came away with the title and thus naming curseyoukhan the Baron of Beantown. It's a fairly one-dimensional army, but it does range better than just about any 400 point army. Major Q9 can give this army fits, but most armies will be overwhelmed by this army's mobility and high-powered ranged attacks. This team will be competitive in any tournament setting.

500 Point Army:
2x Gorillinators
1x Nakita Agents
1x Raelin
1x Krug

This army is fairly similar to the above army, but Krug helps fix some of the problems you might face with high cost heroes or high defense figures. Raelin makes it a bit more durable, but she also reduces the mobility of the army if you wish to use her effectively. This army requires more monitoring of order markers, but if you're careful it can compete with most competitive 500 point armies.

600 Point Army:
2x Gorillinators
1x Nakita Agents
1x Raelin
1x Laglor
1x Agent Carr

This 590 point configuration has little mobility, but it completely maximizes the potential of the Gorillinators. This army does best if you can move it as a pod, but the Gorillinators can branch out to glyphs if needed. Agent Carr shouldn't see a whole lot of use until a high defense figure attempts to destroy your ranged core. All of your ranged forces receive the range enhancement from Laglor, so you should be able to outrange most foes. This army also allows you to test out your order marker management as this is critical in order for this army to perform well. If you can do this, the above army will do well in most 600 point tournament settings.
Ninjas of the Northern Wind
The Ninjas are one of those units that have a high cool factor, and for this fact alone they see quite a bit of play. The Ninjas can prove to be more than just a cool looking squad on the Heroscape battlefield though. They have the capability of hitting your opponent hard and getting away unscathed. The main problem with the Ninjas is that they are a unique squad of three; this means that losing even one of them will severely diminish the squad’s capabilities. With their defense of 3, losing a Ninja to an attack is pretty easy to do. Luckily Ninjas have some other stats and special abilities to help keep them alive. They have a movement of 6 and an attack of 4, so they are often more mobile than their opponents, and can move in and kill the opposing figures before even being attacked themselves. They also have Disengage and Ghost Walk to help them be even more mobile without taking a passing swipe while moving past enemy figures and moving through any figures to get to their target. Their third special ability is probably the best at keeping them alive. It is the Disappearing Ninja ability that allows them to roll the d20 anytime they are attacked with a normal attack and a skull is rolled. If they roll more than an 11 on the d20, they do not have to roll defense and can move up to four spaces away. Overall the Ninjas have some pretty solid stats and specials for 110 points, but they do rely on the d20 a bit.

Strategies:
Ninjas can be used in a number of ways. With their mobility and decent attack, they are a good hit and run style squad. Units like Sgt. Drake or 4th Massachusetts Line are good targets for the Ninjas because they have a good chance to kill them before they get a chance to retaliate, and they don't have a special attack to negate the Ninjas disappearing special ability. Units like Major Q9 and Braxas are bad news for the Ninjas as their life/defense are great enough that it will take several turns for the Ninjas to finish them off, and the Queglix Gun and Poison Breath will wreak havoc on the Ninjas in bypassing their disappearing special.
Suggested Armies:

400 Point Army:
2x Microcorp Agents
1x Ninjas of the Northern Wind
1x Raelin
This 400 point army can cause a lot of pain for its opponent and will be very annoying if the Microcorp and Ninjas are having good luck with the d20. Using Raelin's shield will make it hard for an opponent to hit figures in this army, but these units both have a chance with d20 to prevent or negate the hits. The main weakness of this army is there is not a solid beat stick hero, but the Ninjas do have some heavy hitting power in themselves, one just needs to be careful where to dedicate them, and when.
500 Point Army:
1x Izumi Samurai
1x Kozuke Samurai
1x Krav Maga Agents
1x Kaemon Awa
1x Ninjas of the Northern Wind
This army weighs in at 490 points and obviously is more of a theme army with many martial artists represented, but it is an army that can also deal some major damage. Its main weakness is the lack of a common squad and one will also need to be a master of order marker manipulation to utilize this army well. The Izumi are good glyph grabbers and can tie down pesky units. The Kozuke and Ninjas both are highly mobile and can hit an opponent hard with a heavy attack, while the Krav and Kaemon Awa will support your army with ranged fire. I would say Kaemon is definitely the backbone of this group. Although a lucky shot or two can take him out, I have seen him run the board laying waste to all around him. Unfortunately I was on the losing side of that battle.
650 Point Army:
1x Airborne Elite
1x Krav Maga Agents
2x Sacred Band
1x Marcus Decimus Gallus
1x Parmenio
1x Ninjas of the Northern Wind
1x Theracus
This army offers a lot of synergy. While the Ninjas augment it well, they are not the main unit in the army. The Ninjas discipline trait plays very well into this band. Everyone in the army is disciplined except for the Krav Maga, but Parmenio will fix that. With all of the units being disciplined, the Sacred Band will be very happy with their extra defense. This army also has a fair amount of soldiers that will gain a very handy movement bonus from Marcus. An opponent will also have some fits if the d20 is hot for this army as both the Sacred Band and Ninjas will be able to avoid death with good d20 rolls. The Krav Maga will also be able to avoid some blows with their stealth dodge. This army plays pretty straight forward, with only the timing of the AE drop being a big factor in changing up a strategy. Most tier one armies will find this war band a force to be reckoned with.
We hope you have enjoyed the second installment of Power Rankings Revealed. In the coming weeks, the Heroscape Power Rankings thread will hint toward the units being covered next time, so be sure to check it out!
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