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Competitive Armies Discussion Discuss, critique, and build ideas for tournament-caliber armies.


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Old July 8th, 2020, 01:28 PM
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The (Cheese) Gauntlet

The Gauntlet is a concept from other gaming communities that I haven't seen explicitly laid out on HeroScapers. Basically, the Gauntlet is a generic list of strong archetypes and armies for a particular format or tournament. The purpose of the Gauntlet is to quickly and efficiently test an army by "Running the Gauntlet": you jam your build into all the archetypes and most of the builds to learn its (and your) strengths and weaknesses.

Take the following Gauntlet as an example. It doesn't really matter if every army is 100% optimized because you're looking to get a general sense of how good things are.



Format: 500 Points, 24 Hexes

WtF Nonsense:
6x 4th, Sam Brown, Kyntella
5x 10th, Raelin, Marcu

Range+Screen:
3x Glads, 3x Blasts, Raelin
5x Stingers, Raelin, Kaemon (no screen, but this is the easiest place to put them)
3x Stingers, 3x Rats, Raelin, Kaemon
3x Rats, Q9, Raelin, Hydra
3x Greenscales, Nilfheim, Raelin, Marro Warriors

Bonding Melee:
4x Heavies, Grimnak, Nerak, Marro Warriors
5x Knights, Gilbert, Eldgrim, Isamu
4x Dwarves, Mogrimm, Darrak, Marcu, Isamu, Oto
5x Romans, Marcus, MBS, Raelin, Marcu
5x Death Chasers, Raelin, Nerak, MBS, Theracus

A+ Junk:
Zelrig, Eltahale, 2x Dwarves, Marcu, Isamu
Countless other examples (Cyprien, Airborne, PKs, Braxas, and Q10/Kaemon are all good)



Format: 450 Points, 18 Figures

WtF Nonsense:
4x 4th, Sgt Drake (SotM)
4x 10th, Eltahale, Isamu

Range+Screen:
3x Greenscales, Nilfheim, Raelin
3x Rats, Q9, Raelin, 1x PKs
4x Stingers, Raelin, Kaemon, Isamu (no screen, but this is the easiest place to put them)

Bonding Melee:
4x Heavies, Grimnak, Nerak
4x Knights, Gilbert, Zetacron
4x Dwarves, Mogrimm, Arkmer
4x Death Chasers, Raelin, MBS, Nerak, Marcu, Swog
4x Romans, Marcus, Raelin, MBS, Marcu

A+ Junk:
Same figures as before, except probably Zelrig



Format: 16 Figures, 400 Points

WtF Nonsense:
4x 4th, Alastair
4x 10th, Raelin, Marcu (or Marcus)

Range+Screen:
3x Rats, Q9, Raelin, Marcu
5x Stingers, Raelin, Marcu (no screen, but this is the easiest place to put them)

Bonding Melee:
4x Knights, Gilbert, Isamu
3x Heavies, Grimnak, Nerak, Marcu
4x Dwarves, Mogrimm
3x Romans, Marcus, Raelin, MBS, Marcu
4x Death Chasers, Raelin, MBS, Nerak

A+ Junk:
Same as before, except Zelrig gets even worse



Now, you don't have to test into each specific matchup, but you should know how to play generally into each archetype. The next few CoV episodes will be diving more in depth to the archetypes (how to play with and against them).

I'll also be posting more of these Gauntlets (including a VC-inclusive one with Nathan), which will hopefully make testing your builds less daunting.

Happy Scaping!

Last edited by OrcElfArmyOne; September 17th, 2020 at 12:31 PM.
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Old July 8th, 2020, 01:38 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

This is really cool. I’m definitely gonna use this as a template next time I playtest new army ideas. It seems simple yet effective. Should streamline my playtesting considerably. And if I’m playtesting with a buddy I’m sure it would be easy to persuade them to play a really strong army.
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Old July 8th, 2020, 01:44 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtl1998 View Post
This is really cool. Iím definitely gonna use this as a template next time I playtest new army ideas. It seems simple yet effective. Should streamline my playtesting considerably. And if Iím playtesting with a buddy Iím sure it would be easy to persuade them to play a really strong army.
That's great! I've found that having a list of pre-made armies also heavily cuts down on the time spent before games deciding what to play, giving you more time to grind games.
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Old July 8th, 2020, 01:50 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Cool idea. I think it's helpful to have a preset list of armies to run through. Honestly I'd love a Reverse the Whip gauntlet since it's often even more difficult to come up with armies for that.

Just on a completely different note, the Ogre Pulverizer 500 point Chaser build isn't great. That's three bonding heroes and only four squads of Chasers, and Chasers die fast. If I'm playing Deathchasers bring the cheese at 500 I'm doing 5x Deathchasers MBS Nerak Raelin Theracus. Theracus is actually great with Deathchasers and great with Raelin if you know what you're doing with him. But in reality 500 is just such an awkward point total for DCs that I'm probably just not running them period. That's one thing that I don't see talked about a lot, how certain armies power spike at very specific point totals and you don't need to worry about them as much at other point totals. For example I'm not too scared of 480 or 490 point Heavies but they are much scarier at 500, and even more scary at 520. Deathchasers are even more of a power spike army since they are really only good since Nerak and MBS are amazing with them so they don't have many build options. Deathchasers are really only Cheese viable at 400 and 460 (455).

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  #5  
Old July 8th, 2020, 02:05 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Quote:
Originally Posted by vegietarian18 View Post
Cool idea. I think it's helpful to have a preset list of armies to run through. Honestly I'd love a Reverse the Whip gauntlet since it's often even more difficult to come up with armies for that.

Just on a completely different note, the Ogre Pulverizer 500 point Chaser build isn't great. That's three bonding heroes and only four squads of Chasers, and Chasers die fast. If I'm playing Deathchasers bring the cheese at 500 I'm doing 5x Deathchasers MBS Nerak Raelin Theracus. Theracus is actually great with Deathchasers and great with Raelin if you know what you're doing with him. But in reality 500 is just such an awkward point total for DCs that I'm probably just not running them period. That's one thing that I don't see talked about a lot, how certain armies power spike at very specific point totals and you don't need to worry about them as much at other point totals. For example I'm not too scared of 480 or 490 point Heavies but they are much scarier at 500, and even more scary at 520. Deathchasers are even more of a power spike army since they are really only good since Nerak and MBS are amazing with them so they don't have many build options. Deathchasers are really only Cheese viable at 400 and 460 (455).
That's a good point on power spikes at different totals. Knights are probably the best army in the game at 455 (5x Knights Gilbert is just insane). I'll update my Chasers builds in the OP; I'm not that experienced with them and without the Ogre, but I'll take your word for it.

As for RtW, it's even more dependent on the point total than cheese. However, I can post my Gauntlet from last year's testing, which will at least give people a baseline. There are certain things I can't post from it, but I can at least post most of it.
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Old July 8th, 2020, 07:43 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

That was a fast turn around, I like it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OrcElfArmyOne View Post
I'll also be posting more of these Gauntlets (including a VC-inclusive one with Nathan), which will hopefully make testing your builds less daunting.
Forget this Nathan guy, he's probably a scrub. Pick me instead.
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Old July 9th, 2020, 12:45 AM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Quote:
Originally Posted by infectedsloth View Post
That was a fast turn around, I like it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OrcElfArmyOne View Post
I'll also be posting more of these Gauntlets (including a VC-inclusive one with Nathan), which will hopefully make testing your builds less daunting.
Forget this Nathan guy, he's probably a scrub. Pick me instead.
I'm almost always slow with posting things, but not always.
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Old July 9th, 2020, 04:28 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

This is a nice resource, enjoying reading through it.

One initial thought: I think there's some value in separating Range+Screen & just Range.

At 450 pts & 400 pts, you have Stingers + Raelin in Range + Screen without any screen (unless you're counting the stingers as screening for themselves).

Range + Screen plays quite differently than just Range, especially in round 1, and the separation might be valuable for helping show the differences in how those armies should be played.
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Old July 9th, 2020, 05:17 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Perkins View Post
This is a nice resource, enjoying reading through it.

One initial thought: I think there's some value in separating Range+Screen & just Range.

At 450 pts & 400 pts, you have Stingers + Raelin in Range + Screen without any screen (unless you're counting the stingers as screening for themselves).

Range + Screen plays quite differently than just Range, especially in round 1, and the separation might be valuable for helping show the differences in how those armies should be played.
Thatís definitely a good point on separating them out. Iíll do that later. I made the 500 gauntlet first, and just adapted it down to the other two totals without changing where things were. Iím also going to add more examples of good A+ Junk armies. Thanks for the feedback! Sorry we wonít be able to hang and play at GenCon this year.
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Old August 20th, 2020, 04:06 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Although it doesn't fit neatly into your categories, I think at 400/16 figures the following army is pretty solid.

3x Arrow Gruts
3x Swog Rider
Krug
Raelin 395 (14 figs)

Quote:
Originally Posted by fomox View Post
(I've also played many matches with great, fun people who were using Q9. So using Q9 doesn't make you a tool. But being a tool sure seems to make you use Q9.)
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Old September 16th, 2020, 04:12 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Quote:
Originally Posted by OrcElfArmyOne View Post
Bonding Melee:
4x Dwarves, Mogrimm, Arkmer
Why do you put Arkmer in with the dwarves at 450? I realize there is only 1 figure left, but I would run Me-Burq-Sa over Arkmer every time. Am I missing something?
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Old September 16th, 2020, 04:31 PM
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Re: The (Cheese) Gauntlet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vydar is the man View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by OrcElfArmyOne View Post
Bonding Melee:
4x Dwarves, Mogrimm, Arkmer
Why do you put Arkmer in with the dwarves at 450? I realize there is only 1 figure left, but I would run Me-Burq-Sa over Arkmer every time. Am I missing something?
Well, I donít think MBS is that great when heís not bonding. The reason he gets an A in my ratings is because he bonds with Romans and Death Chasers.

Further, Arkmer helps a lot in one of the toughest Dwarf matchups: Knights. 10th is bad too, but neither Arkmer nor MBS helps there. MBS really needs Raelin to compete with 10th at range. Arkmer also helps into Heavies, which is not irrelevant. Iím just not seeing a reason to take MBS over Arkmer with the current expected meta. I donít think non-bonding MBS is generally better than Arkmer for the points anyways, and I think the upsides of Arkmer are even more important with Dwarves than with other armies.
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