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Old May 30th, 2022, 01:06 PM
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The Competitive Buying Guide

IMPORTANT: I recorded an episode talking through this. You can listen to it HERE. In it, I explain my reasoning more thoroughly.

HeroScape doesn't have to be an expensive game, if you know where to start. This guide will aid the new player in choosing which units to buy first. It isn't quite as simple as using my Power Rankings or my Classic Gauntlet, although I would recommend both. I'd also recommend listening to my podcast, Casters of Valhalla, to develop a better understanding of the game.

Throughout, you'll see two prices. The first is the price on AllThingsHeroScape (as of May 2022). The second is 70% of that price, which is the fair market value (FMV tends to be 60-70% of ATH's prices; I'm using 70% throughout for consistency). The exception is the first two master sets, which are comically overpriced on ATH (so I'm using my own values for those).

PLEASE NOTE: the quantities I'm recommending throughout is what I would start with. Eventually you may want an additional squad or two of some of these units, but it isn't necessary when you're just starting out.

The * means that the unit is recommended somewhere else on the list. For example, Marcus becomes an even better purchase if you're also buying both 10th and Romans.

You'll also see three ratings under the armies:
Strength is how powerful the army is (in relation to the other armies listed; even the worst armies here are stronger than 90% of the other units in the game, and can win tournaments).
Flexibility is how easy it is to use the units in different formats.
Affordability is how cheap the army is to buy.

Also note that this is Classic Scape only. VC would naturally add things and shift things around. And this doesn't account for 3D printing, which is obviously an excellent option for expanding a collection.



THE TWO FIRST BUYS:

You should own a Rise of the Valkyrie (RotV) master set. The terrain lets you build three excellent competitive maps (Flash 19's Origin, GameBear's Common Ground, and Killometer's Dry Season). The figures you get include two of the very best units in the game, Raelin and Marro Warriors.

RotV full set ($133, $60): Raelin (RotV), Marro Warriors, Grimnak, Krav Maga Agents, Airborne Elite, Mimring, Ne-Gok-Sa, Sgt. Drake (RotV), Syvarris, Tarn Viking Warriors, Finn

You should also purchase at least the figures from the Swarm of the Marro (SotM) master set. You can buy a full set, but you don't need to.

SotM- Figures Only ($89, $30): Major Q10, Stingers, Sgt. Drake (SotM), Marrden Nagrubs, Tor-Kul-Na

SotM- Full Set ($178, $100)

Total: $90 (RotV + SotM figures) or $160 (Both Full Sets)



Fillers:

These are really, really necessary for a collection. I'd recommend picking up both of these ASAP, but if you can't get both, I'd recommend Marcu over Isamu.

Marcu ($20, $14)
Isamu ($32, $22)



Important Unique Heroes:

I'd get these three units as well, as they fill important roles in many armies.

Major Q9* ($19, $13)
Nilfheim* ($27, $19)
Kaemon Awa* ($31, $22)



My First Army:

This is the perfect army to start off with because of its affordability. It has the added benefit of being exceptionally easy to play. Just don't roll for Stinger Drain!


Stingers Raelin
3x Stingers ($9, $6)
Kaemon Awa* ($31, $22)
Total: $40

Strength: 2.5/4
Flexibility: 3/4
Affordability: 4/4
Total: 9.5/12

Works well with: 2x Stingers (from SotM), Raelin RotV, Major Q10



First Tier 1 Armies:

These are other excellent choices for your first army (or in addition to Stingers Raelin). I also included one top-tier army of each archetype (Range, Range + Screen, and Bonding Melee).


Q9 Rats (Deathreavers):
3x Rats ($20, $14)
Major Q9* ($19, $13)
Fen Hydra* ($47, $33)
Total: $88

Strength: 4/4
Flexibility: 3.5/4
Affordability: 3.5/4
Total: 11/12

Works well with: Raelin (RotV), Marro Warriors, Krav Maga Agents, Airborne Elite, Braxas


10th Regiment:
4x 10th ($31, $22)
Marcus Decimus Gallus* ($12, $8 )
Total: $96

Strength: 3.5/4
Flexibility: 4/4
Affordability: 3.5/4
Total: 11/12

Works well with: Raelin (RotV), Marro Warriors, Airborne Elite, Phantom Knights, Major Q9


Greenscale Warriors:
3x Greenscales ($44, $31)
Nilfheim* ($27, $19)
Charos* ($9, $6)
Total: $118

Strength: 2.5/4
Flexibility: 3.5/4
Affordability: 3/4
TOTAL: 9/12

Works well with: Raelin (RotV), Marro Warriors, Braxas


Heavy Gruts:
4x Heavies ($49, $34)
Swog Rider* (Used as Nerak) ($18, $13)
Total: $149

Strength: 3.5/4
Flexibility: 2/4
Affordability: 2.5/4
TOTAL: 8/12

Works well with: Grimnak, Marro Warriors, Raelin


Other Tier 1 Armies:

These armies all have lower scores in one-two categories that keeps them from being as easy to recommend to the new player.


4th Mass:
4x 4th* ($27, $19)
Eldgrim* ($13, $9)
Kyntella ($18, $13)
Charos* ($9, $6)
Alastair* ($16, $11)
Total: $115

Strength: 3.5/4
Flexibility: 1.5/4
Affordability: 3/4
Total: 8/12

Works well with: Both Sgt. Drakes


Knights of Weston:
4x Knights ($53, $37)
Gilbert ($67, $47)
Eldgrim* ($13, $9)
Alastair* ($16, $11)
Total: $215

Strength: 3.5/4
Flexibility: 2/4
Affordability: 2/4
Total: 7.5/12

Works well with: Marro Warriors, Raelin (RotV) (if you have Marro Warriors), Nilfheim


Axegrinders:
4x Dwarves ($142, $99)
Mogrimm ($20, $14)
Darrak ($10, $7)
Total: $417

Strength: 3/4
Flexibility: 4/4
Affordability: 1/4
Total: 8/12

Works well with: Marro Warriors, Krav Maga Agents


Glad/Blast:
3x Gladiatrons ($62, $43)
2x Blastatrons ($20, $14)
Total: $157

Strength: 3/4
Flexibility: 2/4
Affordability: 2.5/4
Total: 7.5/12

Works well with: Raelin (RotV)


Roman Legionnaires:
4x Romans ($41, $29)
Marcus* ($12, $8 )
Me-Burq-Sa* ($10, $7)
Total: $131

Strength: 2.5/4
Flexibility: 3/4
Affordability: 3/4
Total: 8.5/12

Works well with: Raelin (RotV), Marro Warriors


Death Chasers:
4x Death Chasers ($49, $34)
Me-Burq-Sa* ($10, $7)
2x Swog Rider* (Use one as Nerak) ($18, $13)
Total: $169

Strength: 2.5/4
Flexibility: 2.5/4
Affordability: 2.5/4
Total: 7.5/12

Works well with: Raelin (RotV)


Other Worthwhile Figures:

These figures are less of a priority to own than the fillers (Marcu and Isamu) and important uniques (Major Q9, Nilfheim, and Kaemon Awa) listed above. However, after you have one or two top-tier armies, these are all really useful units to own.

4x Phantom Knights ($43, $30)
2x Mezzodemon Warmongers ($51, $36)
Me-Burq-Sa* ($10, $7)
Eldgrim* ($13, $9)
Braxas ($22, $15)
Fen Hydra* ($47, $33)
Eltahale ($13, $9)



Terrain:

Again, I'll be assuming you have a RotV master set. No need to have a SotM master set.


My First Expansion:

These are the two staple expansions. Picking up either one will give you a new excellent map (Aeon by Flash 19 with the Road; Remains of Clionesia by tannergx with the Fortress).

Road to the Forgotten Forest ($85, $60)
Fortress of the Archkyrie ($71, $50)


Next Buys:

Eventually, you'll want one of each terrain expansion. This is roughly the order I'd recommend buying them in (and you may be best off purchasing Road or Castle next, whichever you didn't purchase first). I would only worry about getting a second set of Road, Jungle, or Tundra later.

Road/Fortress (whichever you didn't buy)
Ticalla Jungle ($200, $140) (can also buy Sir Heroscape's custom set for $50)
Thaelank Tundra ($178, $125)
Volcarren Wasteland ($80, $56)


Last Buys:

These are harder to recommend because they're more expensive and/or generally less useful. The Underdark set is excellent, but extremely expensive. SotM is solid, but not great. Marvel is still largely unexplored, making it hard to recommend it in 2022.

2x Battle for the Underdark ($222, $155)
Swarm of the Marro ($178, $100)
2x Marvel: the Conflict Begins ($93, $65)

Last edited by OEAO; May 30th, 2022 at 02:37 PM.
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  #2  
Old May 30th, 2022, 07:44 PM
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Re: The Competitive Buying Guide

Really good guide and good idea to put prices together with competitive viability.

I do think the one weak point in this sort of resource is that "competitive" in this sense means "Classic Scape Only Bring 1" which is a very rarely played format nowadays. And even with that you don't have to have everything. My dad and I are both competitive players sharing a collection and we got by without Axegrinders for basically 10 years. We have a few squads now with 3D printing, but formats don't require you to have fully playable cheese armies.

Creating a buying guide for RtW, or Bring 2, or Pod Draft, or whatever, is substantially more difficult, so I get why it was done this way. In many ways it's good that as a community we tends towards those sorts of formats because it does a little work to prevent price from being warped by competitive viability.
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Old June 16th, 2022, 03:02 PM
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Re: The Competitive Buying Guide

Oh wow. I just came across this thread. Fantastic resource for those new to the game!
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Old June 16th, 2022, 08:28 PM
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Re: The Competitive Buying Guide

Wait, people actually purchase stuff from ATH? Their ENTIRE catalog of items is criminally overpriced... I feel as if it is a disservice to the community to even advertise for ATH in this way.

Good guide otherwise. I feel bad for anyone trying to get into Heroscape at these prices listed here. In general, probably best that noobs use armies with more financially cheaper but good unique figures (KMA, Q10, Rae, MW) with rats or stingers, which seem cheap enough. I personally would never suggest to any of my friends to go purchase 3+ sets of common squads like knights or heavies, and my eyes nearly go deaf with axegrinder prices.

I enjoy the podcast, haven't listened in a while, I think I'll give your mentioned episode a go one of these days on my commute to work.
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