This time in our Devastation coverage we move to the proud warriors of the united kriels and their new monstrous northern allies!
What’s up folks!? It’s Trevy the Great here again from Way of the Swan to continue my coverage of the newest expansion for Hordes; Devastation. This time around we’ll meet and greet with the ragtag alliance of the United Kriels and cover the monstrous beasts and powerful soldiers joining the Trollbloods’ noble fight for freedom.
First on the list of new releases is the third incarnation of everyone’s favorite crotchety old troll Warlock; Hoarluk Doomshaper, Dire Prophet. Originally heralded as a portent of the end of balance in the game, this old guy’s actual rules aren’t quite as apocalyptic as first thought. He’s a monstrous tank, shutting down lots of control effects by stopping pushes, placements and knockdowns on his battlegroup and his Warbeasts are all-but unkillable on his Feat turn. Unlike his previous incarnation, Doomshaper3 has some trouble getting across the table with no speed buffs outside of Goad, which make him susceptible to debuffs and scenario jam. Regardless, the abilities of his scrolls give his army a wide toolbox of abilities and allow him to make use of several of Trollblood’s more robust troop-clearing options to help mitigate these issues and his armor stacking gives Trollbloods a solid alternative to heavy armor bricks like Runes of War and “meat mountain,” especially after the change to Trollkin Warders. A very solid Warlock release that follows the slow and steady playstyle of Trollbloods but approaches it in a new way, expect to see Doomshaper3 show up in Troll pairings near you more and more often as the year goes by!
Stomping behind the Dire Prophet comes the mighty Glacier King, the cousin to the thunderous Mountain King that unfortunately is pushing its much-maligned relative onto the shelf. Unlike the Faction’s previous Gargantuan, which boasts inexplicably low MAT and RAT values with no real way to compensate. On the other hand, the Glacier King brings automatic Stationary on its hefty P+S 19 fists and critical knockdown on its massive RNG 12, POW 14 spray! This lets the beast sit back and shoot on the approach, making the opponent’s life miserable with Thunderbolt and Frozen Ground and freezing them solid when they get within reach of their big frosty fists. This gives the Glacier King a very defensive, Colossal-like game plan unique in the Faction and opens the door for Trollbloods to bring powerful gunlines to the table. All this on top of a small defensive buff to nearby models in Snowfall will make the Glacier King a common sight in Trollblood lists for a long time.
This book’s trend of fantastic Trollblood releases continues with the Dhunian Knot, a 3-troll support unit with tons of utility. While they sport abysmal defensive stats, the long range on their premier ability, Puppet Strings, is long enough that they’ll likely never have to be close to the action. While other Factions pay out the nose for this powerful dice manipulation mechanic; 2 points in Skorne and 6 in Cryx, the Knot comes out at a reasonable 3 points for 3 independent castings. This will allow a single unit of these ladies to buff up most of the important die rolls in a turn; from Command checks on friendly units to important ranged attacks and spells from ‘beasts and Warlocks. Combined with the added utility from their healing abilities and frenzy manipulation, and this unit is going to be a staple in many Trollblood lists upon their release.
The last addition to the ranks of the mighty Trollblood warriors are the Pyg Bushwhacker Officer and Mortar, a unit attachment that significantly increases the defensive potential of their parent unit through Camouflage and allows them to get out of tight spots with Slip Away. An interesting release that adds a small measure of utility to the unit with its powerful mortar, this release unfortunately adds points to what is already considered an overpriced unit. While there are interesting applications to hiding Bushwhackers behind a resilient screening unit and moving through them using Slip Away, the fact that the order denies the unit use of their titular Bushwhack order is counter-productive, especially when the abysmal base RAT of the unit hampers the amount of work they’re going to produce on a turn-by-turn basis. Probably the weakest Trollblood release in the book, but regardless a valiant effort to buff up an underplayed unit.
Bushwhacker UA aside, the overall quality of Trollblood releases in Devastation is phenomenal, especially considering their access to many of the Minion releases that came out alongside. Stay tuned for discussion on the Devastation of Minions next!
Are you a supporter of the Trollkin’s plight? How do you like the kriel’s new weapons of war from Devastation?
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