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High Command: Gargantuan Might – Trollblood and Circle Orboros Review

5 Minute Read
Jul 27 2014
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Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.

The fourth expansion for Hordes: High Command has been released, bringing with it the massive engines and leviathan beasts of war.

Gargantuan Might introduces a lot of new things for High Command. It is the first time that the 120mm models from Warmachine and Hordes, specifically Gargantuans and Battle Engines, have been extrapolated into the High Command format. It also is the first expansion to release new resources, specifically VP-less, 3 CMD/3 WAR cards that effectively become 5 CMD/5 WAR when used for purchasing, deploying, or rushing Gargantuans or Battle Engines. The only thing that separates them across factions, aside from card title and art, is that they have different detachment distribution.

If you are planning on running Gargantuans or Battle Engines in your deck, these cards are really solid investments. While their lack of VP is potentially troubling where balanced or purchase-heavy builds are concerned, it is worth noting that every Gargantuan and Battle Engine is worth at least 1 VP and often as many as 3, which will nicely cover the VP lost for taking these new resource cards. Every faction receives this card, with the Trollblood variation called “Shamanic Ritual”, and the Circle Orboros one entitled “Ley Line Intersection”.

With the resource cards out of the way, let us jump into the other new cards specifically for Trollbloods and Circle Orboros:

Trollbloods – 

Hoarluk Doomshaper, Rage of Dhunia, colloquially known as “eDoomy”, is quite expensive to rush at 5 WAR, but his special ability, Scroll of Grimmr, is really, really strong. It states, “Instead of attacking at Doomshaper’s location, for each friendly warbeast and warlock card at his location, destroy one enemy card here,”. So, by his presence alone at a location, you can automatically destroy one enemy card, be it a Mechanithrall or a Demolisher under Armored Shell. Since Scroll of Grimmr procs off of the volume of warbeasts at a location and not necessarily their relative strength, quantity, not quality, will be the determining factor in how much mileage you can potentially get out of it, making warbeasts like Axers, Storm Trolls, or Impalers a good investment if you are looking to exploit the Rage of Dhunia.

Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.

Next up is the Mountain King. At 8 WAR to-purchase and a frighteningly-high 16 WAR to-rush, it seems quite prohibitive in terms of the resources required, but its other stats and Whelp Shedding ability make the Mountain King a very interesting investment. Its resource of 3 WAR gives you a lot of purchasing power, particularly in warbeast-heavy decks, 3 VP is the highest we have yet seen on a non-location card, and its 4 Power and 9 Health give it the means to both lay down an awful hurt and take it on the chin without blinking an eye.

Before I get into Whelp Shedding, I should probably discuss the Troll Whelps card, which is a 1 CMD/1 WAR, 0 Power/1 Health Warrior card that you can deploy or rush to a location with one or more friendly warbeast cards present. This can potentially make locations where Troll Whelps are present into bait for cards with Blast, since the bonus from Blast can effectively be concentrated on one target, like the Mountain King or Earthborn Dire Trolls. However, in lieu of enemy cards with Blast or equivalent abilities, Troll Whelps can make a single deployed warbeast into a potential scoring threat if not dealt with, which is where their real power comes from. Their inclusion is risky since they have little purchasing power, aren’t worth any VPs, and have an all-but-nonexistent stat line, but being able to capture a location with a single warbeast followed by a freely-rushed Troll Whelps card is worth consideration.

The Mountain King’s Whelp Shedding ability, simply allows you to double-down on Whelps provided you have some in your discard pile, which will not be terribly unlikely given that they will often be used for purchasing, deploying, or rushing cards that have an odd number cost.

The last new card for Trollbloods is the War Wagon. This card is effectively built like a warbeast at 3 Power and 7 Health, but purchases and rushes using CMD instead, making this a strong mid-to-late game card for Trollblood decks. Its Quake ability is not exactly terrifying, but it has a solid stat line, is worth 2 VP, and has 2 CMD in purchase power, making it a strong addition to purchase-heavy builds.

Circle Orboros – 

The Circle Orboros’s new warlock in Gargantuan Might is Kaya the Moonhunter. While the rush cost of 5 WAR is prohibitive, her ability, Call of the Wild, allows her to rush or deploy cheap warbeasts en masse to her location. I am particularly fond of combining Call of the Wild with cards like the Scarsfell Griffin, which can relocate after the attack, and the Feral Gorax, which can be pulled back into your hand for the next turn. Using these abilities will save you from over-investing in a capture attempt where you may end up sending more cards to your Occupying Forces pile than you might have otherwise wanted, since doing so can result in a loss of card advantage.

Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.

The Woldwrath has a pretty strong stat block all-around. In terms of its value, 3 WAR in purchasing power is nothing to shake a stick at, nor is its 3 VP in scoring. Its board presence is significant as well at 4 Power, 7 Health. While Earth Shaker, which forces players moving cards to or from the Woldwrath’s location to discard, is rather situational, I have found that the nature of the new location cards in Invasion of Sul and the upcoming Castle of the Keys expansions is to really reward and promote card mobility, so its effect may be felt as players start using and building their detachments accordingly. Its purchase cost is pretty steep at 8 WAR, but it is worth noting that you can rush a Woldwrath for just two more WAR as well, making an investment in the Ley Line Intersection resource card invaluable for decks with a Woldwrath present.

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Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.

The Celestial Fulcrum is downright terrifying in its potential offensive output. Not only does it have reasonable purchase and rush costs, but Fury Generator allows you to crank up its Power to an effective 7 by discarding two cards, enough to turn the tide of nearly any battle while also giving you something to do with some of those early game cards that might not have a huge impact in the game. With a resource stat of 3 CMD, the Fulcrum can be great as a purchase piece if the need is high.

The Tharn Chieftain is an interesting card to consider. Its lack of VP has me less-than-thrilled, but its purchase and rush cost are pretty low, it hits really hard at 4 Power, and Tharn Commander, which increases the Power and Health of other Tharn cards at its location, make this a card to strongly consider, particularly in Tharn-heavy decks.

Stay tuned for the next part of our Gargantuan Might review when we look at the new releases for Skorne and Legion of Everblight!

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