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


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Old September 27th, 2007, 05:13 AM
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Cheap, but effective 500 point armies

Budget Competitive Armies

Aside from points, number of starting hexes, order marker effectiveness, and synergy, some of us face very practical constraints when determining how to go about making a tournament-ready* army. Iím not talking about time- if youíre reading this thread, youíve probably got plenty. What Iím talking about is money. (Iíll also be assuming a 500 point/24 hex format.)

Many players donít own every expansion, or 5 of every common in the game. Now this might limit their choices a bit, but it doesnít completely preclude them from making a decent army or two. Iíll divide this into multiple sections that mimic how a typical playerís collection is likely to grow. Iím still pretty new to the game myself, so hopefully this is fairly accurate.

Iíll also color-code the armies based on some classifications I made in another article. The short version is that the redder a unitís name is, the more order markers you should place on it.

I. I just got my Master Set and Iím ready to rock!

The Best of RotV
Krav Maga Agents 100
Raelin the Kyrie Warrior 180
Izumi Samurai 240
Marro Warriors 290
Airborne Elite 400
Syvarris or Agent Carr 500 (12 starting hexes [16 after the AE drop])
This is a fairly decent army. It wonít win any tournaments, but you might do alright.

Swarm of the Marro!
Tor-Kul-Na 220
2x Marrden Nagrubs 280
2x Marro Drudge 380
2x Marro Stingers 500 (20 hexes)
The inclusion of double commons and a decent 500 point army in SotM was probably intentional. Could work great if you see any swamp maps!

II. I canít find Swarm of the Marro yet anywhere, but Wave 5 and 6 are everywhere! I wonít get seconds on any common yet, but I did snag Raknarís Vision.
At this stage, you want to stick to very powerful uniques with the occasional squad of Deathreavers thrown in. They're just about the only common that I can recommend getting just one squad of with a clear conscience.

Semi-offensive hodgepodge
Major Q9 180
Krav Maga Agents 280
Nakita Agents 400
Kozuke Samurai 500 (11)

Rˇchean Knockoff (his 2nd place Gencon army didnít have Raelin, but it did have 3x rats)
Kaemon Awa 120
Raelin 200
Airborne Elite 310
Krav Maga Agents 410
Marro Warriors 460
1x Deathreavers 500 (13/17)

Listen to your friend Nilfheim, heís a cool dude!
Nilfheim 185
Airborne Elite 295
Raelin 375
Kaemon Awa 495 (4/8)

Killer Queen, Dynamite, and a Laser Beam! (An excellent idea put forth by SoulfulKillingMachine)
Braxas 210
Airborne Elite 320
Major Q9 500 (4/8)

III. Okay, Iíve tracked down most of the other unique packs out there. Now what?

a. To be honest, not that much changes! Wave 6 (Kaemon Awa), Raknarís Vision, and the original master set have some of the most powerful stand-alone Unique units out there. Most of the other unique heroes are more useful with their respective common squads. You might give the Tagawa Samurai or the Vampires a whirl, but thatís about it.
b. Okay, I lied about the other Uniques thing. I did go over to TRU and grab 1 SotM and an extra pack of Deathreavers.

Rˇchean-inspired use of the New Drake and more
Sgt. Drake Alexander (SotM) 170
Major Q10 320
Major Q9 or Kaemon Awa and Shiori 500

Mattser's "Let's make Sonlen awesome" army
Sonlen 160
Major Q9 340
Raelin 420
2x Deathreavers 500

IV. I bought doubles of some of my favorite common squads...
Okay, now comes the fun part! (This is about where I am in my own collection.) Here are just a few of the possibilities:

A slightly incomplete Arrow Grut army
Krug 120
Mimring 270
2x Arrow Gruts 350
2x Swog Rider 400
Raelin 480
Marcu Esenwein 500 (16)

Basic Valiant
Alastair 110
Finn 190
Eldgrim 220
2x 4th. Massachusetts line 360
2x Knights of Weston 500 (19)

Funrunís Gencon offering
Nilfheim 185
2x Deathreavers 265
Raelin 345
Krav Maga Agents 445
Marro Warriors 495 (17)

Matrix Renegadeís double bonding
Krug 120
Me-Burq-Sa 170
Marcus Decimus Gallus 270
2x Arrow Gruts 350
2x Swog Rider 400
2x Roman Legion 500 (23)

UPC plus AE
Marcus Decimus Gallus 100
2x Roman Legion 200
Me-Burq-Sa 250
2x 4th. Massachusetts Line 390
Airborne Elite 500 (19/23)

V. So I was in TRU yesterday, and those flagbearers looked so shiny!
Note that neither of these first two armies (which both appeared in the top 8 of the championship at Gencon) require multiples of any commons.

MattserTruckRallyís Gencon tournament winner
Laglor 110
Raelin 190
Major Q9 370
Krav Maga Agents 470
Isamu 480
Marcu Esenwein 500 (9)

Skyknightís army
Laglor 110
Major Q9 290
Braxas 500 (5)

Basic Valiant Variant
Sir Gilbert 105
Alastair 215
2x Knights of Weston 355
2x 4th. Massachusetts Line 495 (18)

VI. ďOne, two, five! -Three sir! -Right, three!Ē
Unless youíre doing something really weird, like clogging the map with Blade Gruts, Marro Drones, or Deathreavers, 3 of any given common is probably more than enough to make almost any 500 point army you want.

*These armies take a lot as a given. This includes the standard format and meta-game present at most tournaments today, as well as an understanding that the author hasnít played in that many tournaments yet himself. Iím certainly looking forward to NHSD though! If I'm horribly wrong, or you don't like being misrepresented in some way, let me know. If you have other 'cheap' armies to add, let's hear them.

Edit 11/15: Funnily enough, at my first tournament, I decided to try out 6x 4th Massachusetts line + Airborne Elite! I went 4-2 (~11th out of 60), and I had to run out and buy some/borrow some from cool people. I lost to a better played Valiant army that had 4x Mass, 2x Knights and Gilbert (3rd place finisher), and a Q9+ Krug and gruts/swog army (6th place finisher).

spider_poison's winning army that went 6-0 for the day was this:
4x Marro Stingers 240
Raelin 320
Kaemon Awa 440
2x Deathreavers 520
Isamu 530 (23 hexes)

Which isn't a terribly expensive army at all, especially when you consider that I let him borrow two of my stinger squads!

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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  #2  
Old September 27th, 2007, 05:40 AM
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This is very interesting. All you really need is anyone of the master sets and you can make a few tournament ready army, after that I suggest hero packs and a few unique packs. With Sotm you can use the great Stingers guys with 2 of them which is what I've been doing.

See Valhalla like never before:
Airborne Elite in the
BYZANTINE CAVE...
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  #3  
Old September 27th, 2007, 10:52 AM
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I'd like to mention this army here - it requires a RotV master set, Raknar's Vision and Heroes of Durgeth (only for Eldgrim, he can be replaced)

Major Q9 - 180
Krav Maga Agents - 100
Raelin - 80
Airborne Elite - 110
Eldgrim - 30

Total = 500

This hodgepodge of uniques makes the most out of Raelin by combining her with Q9 and the Krav, and then the Airborne Elite fly in to throw the opponent into disarray. Eldgrim is there solely to grab a glyph and then die, giving the Major or the Krav one extra move. He can be replaced with any other filler unit. This army has proven to be ridiculously strong for me, (probably because it includes 4 of the 5 banned units for Canton's Nat Heroscape Day tourney!) because it has a lot of range, power and order marker placement is easy (once Raelin is positioned and Eldgrim is on a glyph, its all Krav / Q9 until the AE drop).

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  #4  
Old September 27th, 2007, 11:23 AM
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Great read, Jexik! Your advice continues to be useful, especially as I'm somewhere around II Still, it's good to know I still have a chance on NHSD

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TexMex: 2nd Place
Mrs. TexMex: 8th Place--Out of 10
PS I lost every battle in my first tourney
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Old September 27th, 2007, 01:47 PM
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Sweet post.

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  #6  
Old September 27th, 2007, 06:52 PM
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I'm sure this is in some other thread somewhere, but what's the significance of the colors? Unit class?
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Old September 27th, 2007, 07:07 PM
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Shouldn't a 2/3 SoTM master set army be in here? Kind of like this:
Jormi_Boced's Gencon Army (4th place winner)
Marro Hive
Marro Stingersx5
Guilty McCreech
Isamu
If you can't get that many SoTM (3) try this...
Marro Hive
Marro Stingersx3
Crypien Esenwein
Isamu

Bloody the Marro Stinger is the Chimeran Ravager in the....
KEEP OF THE NECRONOMICON
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Old September 27th, 2007, 08:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarissimus
I'm sure this is in some other thread somewhere, but what's the significance of the colors? Unit class?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jexik
Iíll also color-code the armies based on some classifications I made in another article. If youíre curious, head down to my signature and check that article out as well. The short version is that the redder a unitís name is, the more order markers you should place on it.
I wrote an article about order marker usage (the link is provided in my signature). You'll notice that a lot of these armies in this article are very red. This means that they are very aggressive, and likely to win some games, especially against inexperienced opponents.

To really do well, you need more support, but that can be hard to do without getting flagbearers or multiple commons. The cheapest way to an effective tournament army is to base it around a few effective Menacers: units that are strong both offensively and defensively, but don't require many duplicates to be effective.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloody the Marro Stinger
Shouldn't a 2/3 SoTM master set army be in here? Kind of like this:
Jormi_Boced's Gencon Army (4th place winner)
Marro Hive
Marro Stingersx5
Guilty McCreech
Isamu
If you can't get that many SoTM (3) try this...
Marro Hive
Marro Stingersx3
Crypien Esenwein
Isamu
There is a rather large number of great armies that one can base around 4x Stingers. However, in the 500 point format, I would be reluctant to use the Marro Hive, especially if I only have one type of Common Marro squad. Even if we assume that you take every turn with the hive for 8 rounds (which I believe is longer than the typical tournament game or Marro Hive is likely to last), you are looking at getting back about 8 Marro Stingers, or... 160 points exactly of Stingers. However, it limits their movement, and this is assuming it sits around for an entire 8 rounds without getting destroyed.

For the sake of the idea behind the article, I didn't include any armies that require more than one master set.

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 27th, 2007, 08:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jexik
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clarissimus
I'm sure this is in some other thread somewhere, but what's the significance of the colors? Unit class?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jexik
Iíll also color-code the armies based on some classifications I made in another article. If youíre curious, head down to my signature and check that article out as well. The short version is that the redder a unitís name is, the more order markers you should place on it.
I wrote an article about order marker usage (the link is provided in my signature). You'll notice that a lot of these armies in this article are very red. This means that they are very aggressive, and likely to win some games, especially against inexperienced opponents.

To really do well, you need more support, but that can be hard to do without getting flagbearers or multiple commons. The cheapest way to an effective tournament army is to base it around a few effective Menacers: units that are strong both offensively and defensively, but don't require many duplicates to be effective.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloody the Marro Stinger
Shouldn't a 2/3 SoTM master set army be in here? Kind of like this:
Jormi_Boced's Gencon Army (4th place winner)
Marro Hive
Marro Stingersx5
Guilty McCreech
Isamu
If you can't get that many SoTM (3) try this...
Marro Hive
Marro Stingersx3
Crypien Esenwein
Isamu
There is a rather large number of great armies that one can base around 4x Stingers. However, in the 500 point format, I would be reluctant to use the Marro Hive, especially if I only have one type of Common Marro squad. Even if we assume that you take every turn with the hive for 8 rounds (which I believe is longer than the typical tournament game or Marro Hive is likely to last), you are looking at getting back about 8 Marro Stingers, or... 160 points exactly of Stingers. However, it limits their movement, and this is assuming it sits around for an entire 8 rounds without getting destroyed.

For the sake of the idea behind the article, I didn't include any armies that require more than one master set.
Personally, the Hive can be used effectively as long as you protect it. But that's my opinion. Thanks for the clarification about the MS limit in this article!
More ideas into the bucket:
Q9
Sonlen
Raelin (Old)
Roboratsx2
(Suggested by MattserTruckRally in the "Competetive Armies with Sonlen" thread.
That's fairly inexpensive. 2 common packs, both MS, and one large hero. I don't think that costs too much for the purposes of this article, and it's a pretty good army. As MattserTruckRally said, "Basically, you have Sonlen with two of the best healing targets in the game".

Bloody the Marro Stinger is the Chimeran Ravager in the....
KEEP OF THE NECRONOMICON
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Old September 27th, 2007, 09:29 PM
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I took your suggestions into account Bloody, and I added another army I remember seeing when people asked about how to use the new Drake. I believe it actually had Kaemon Awa and Izumi Samurai, but I included Shiori mostly for flavor.

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 7th, 2009, 01:36 PM
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Re: Cheap, but effective 500 point armies

Stuck on Part 2. Dumb Budget
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