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Old June 2nd, 2018, 05:58 PM
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BiggaBullfrog BiggaBullfrog is offline
 
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Bol by @The Dewk

For a decade Isamu and Otonashi have been the only 10 pointers in the game. Bol seeks to join them in the lowest-point-figure club, but is he deserving of the position?

Balance

Bolís best comparisons for balance are, naturally, the other 10-pointers. He doesnít have the end game winning potential that Isamu has, but I would be wary if he did. He compares best with Otonashi, as she and Bol have the same stats, can both add 2 to their attack and have a power to help them get bonus moves into position. The two also have niche roles that help define the kind of army that will look to utilize them.

It is also worth mentioning that Bol can be activated by a Nottingham Brigandís Rogue Hero Bonding. This gives him some versatility and should be considered in his point value, but his stats in general are weak enough that he isnít better than an additional Brigand in the army. Overall, his price as a 10 pointer is balanced well.

Theme

The overall theme of Bol is his role as the Goblin-gone-good sidekick. His powers accurately reflect that role, playing out as a character who, even with his change in Valkyrie general, is still not afraid of taking advantage of opportunities and fighting dirty with Ankle Shank (or ďShankle,Ē as I call it). These powers/theme further play into his class as a Rogue, waiting for his opportunity to strike. He is visually distinct from the other Heroscape Goblins, which helps set him apart on the field, and helps paint him as an outcast from the rest of the Goblins.

Creativity

Bol brings two new powers to the table with Opportunism and Ankle Shank. Opportunism is a fun and unique power that allows Bol to take a turn when one of your heroes meets an untimely end. Ankle Shank is a more simple power to give him extra attack against large/huge figures, and is a neat callback to the other 10-point figures who also have the ability to roll 2 more dice against certain figures. Scale and Disengage are both powers used more for their utility, and play into Bolís use. The combination of new and old powers makes for a card that feels fresh but still in line with Classic ĎScape.

Playability

Bolís card is great, but what happens when the paper meets the board? Like any 10-pointer (or any filler, for that matter), heís not meant to have an army built around him. If you think you can run straight Unique Heroes with Bol to bail you out, youíll be wrong. His stats are weak enough that taking a turn with him doesnít really compensate for a missed turn with a stronger hero, and youíll still benefit more with good Order Marker management than on relying on Opportunism. Even in the end game where you may lose a hero in an initiative gamble, his use doesnít completely make up for the turn. I feel thatís a feature of the design, not a bug, as heís just a lone 10-point Goblin and shouldnít be expected to do much.

I did find Bol to have some extra utility in dungeon crawl scenarios, where youíre more likely to run Unique Hero armies and where a bad roll against a dungeon baddie can ruin your day. It allows you to run Bol in for an extra hit or sneak him around to distract other enemy figures. The higher amount of Large/Huge monsters in dungeons also adds to his value there. He still wonít save your bacon in an average game, but if he can put in that final wound on a Hydra just once, youíll be glad to have him along.

I also liked using Bol as a tech option in a Brigand/Rogue army (assuming I had 10 points left). While often the worst figure to bond with in that army (again, as expected of a 10-pointer), he can be used for a distraction/quick strike against an opponents Large/Huge figure. There are also times where you will lose your Brigands quickly and rely on their Rogue heroes. In that kind of endgame, Bolís Opportunism can come into play if one of your heroes meets an untimely demise.

Summary

Bol brings a fun power set to the game. He creates his own niche and fills it well, and while he often wonít be the key factor in winning a game, thatís to be expected of a 10-pointer. In all, he adds something new while feeling like a unit that would fit in the original game, and provides a good third option for 10-point heroes when creating an army.

I vote Yea to induct Bol into the Soldiers of Valhalla.
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