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High Command: Gargantuan Might – Skorne and Legion of Everblight Review

6 Minute Read
Aug 3 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.

In Part 1 of our review of Gargantuan Might, we discussed the new 3 CMD/3 WAR Resource cards. Since they also apply to Skorne and Legion, I will recap for anyone who missed it.

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 Skorne variation called “Beast Mastery”, and the Legion of Everblight one entitled “Coalescing Dragonblight”.

With the Resource cards out of the way, let us jump into the other new cards specifically for Skorne and Legion of Everblight:

Skorne –

Lord Assassin Morghoul seems like a strong warlock to run in two-player formats. He hits plenty hard at Power 4, and his special ability, Assassination Run, allows him to effectively be in two locations at once, adding both his Power 4 and his Battlegroup Commander bonus to each attack. His rush cost of 5 War can be expensive, though, so he will more likely be an early-game solo defense attempt or a late-game blitz.

Skorne’s new Gargantuan card, the Mammoth, is fairly tanky at 8 Health. While its 3 Power is not exactly inspiring, application of Paingiver Beasthandler Teams can adjust a Mammoth’s stats to 5/7, sacrificing one Health for 2 Power. Additional, the Siege Battery special rule gives the Mammoth +2 Power when attacking at locations with warjacks or constructs present which will only become more ubiquitous with the release of Battle Engine cards. Its VP value is not as high as other Gargantuans at 2, but that is still nothing to sneeze at. I like its purchase cost of 7 quite a bit, but its rush cost of 13 makes that prospect quite prohibitive since there currently aren’t any cards in Skorne that make rushing cards cheaper, save Beast Mastery, which effectively makes it a still-expensive 11 to-rush. Its purchasing power is fair at 1 CMD/2 WAR, but if you have a Mammoth in-hand, chances are you’ll want to be deploying it and not using it as a purchasing asset.

Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.
Nihilator Ascetics is a pure aggression card. Their purchase and rush costs are very affordable, and their Power 3 is certainly fair value for those costs, but their lack of VP makes them a card that takes a lot of consideration and limits how often you might see them included in detachments. Berserk is a bit of a drawback as well, but you can get around the penalty by rushing Archdomina Makeda to their location. 
Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.
The Siege Animantarax is a pretty strong addition to Skorne detachments. Its purchase cost of 6 CMD is very reasonable for its stat line. It also brings 2 VP and the Weapon Platform ability, which grants +2 Power if there are any other friendly warrior cards at this location. While 10 to-rush is a little on the expensive side, taking advantage of the 5 CMD provided by Beast Mastery will make the prospect much easier to swallow. If you can deploy alongside warrior cards, its stats are very strong at an effective 4 Power, 7 Health, so try to take advantage of locations that already have infantry present since deploying both the Animantarax and an infantry card might be difficult since both require CMD expenditure.

Legions of Everblight – 

Lylylth, Shadow of Everblight has a very specific application in terms of detachment build and actual in-game us. Like many of the “epic level” warlocks, Llylth, the Shadow of Everblight comes with a large price tag at 5 CMD to-rush. Her 3 Power is fairly modest, particularly given her cost, but her special ability, Decimation, has the capacity to have a huge effect on not just her location, but on every location. It allows both Lylyth and any card at her location with either Combined Fire or Superior Range to add their power to attacks happening at any other location. Unlike Lord Assassin Morghoul, Lylyth’s value actually increases in multiplayer games. 
When deciding on whether or not to run the Shadow of Everblight, you’ll want to make sure you run plenty of cards like the high-value Ravagore, Strider Rangers, or Longbow Archers. Without those cards, you are probably better off running another warlock.

Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.
The Archangel leans strongly towards the offensive end of the spectrum where Gargantuans are concerned. Its stats come in at 4 Power, 7 Health, and its damage output is further boosted via the Draconic Aura rule, which reduces the Health of enemy cards at its location by 1. At 2 CMD/3 WAR in resource strength, it has a lot of buying power, and its 2 VP makes it an encouraging addition as well. Its purchase cost leans towards the high side at 8 WAR, but at 11 WAR to-rush, finding that extra 3 WAR to move it directly from your Reserves to a location should not typically be out-of-the-question.
Courtesy of Privateer Press Digital. Used with Permission.
The Warspear Horde is such a great card. Its rush cost is great, it is worth 1 VP, and Assault combined with Power 2 gives it great offensive potential the turn you deploy it. The only real downside of the card is that its resource value of 1 CMD/1 WAR isn’t terribly thrilling, but the rest of the package makes up for it quite nicely. This card is just a solid addition to the yellow, blue, and red detachments.

The last card for this expansion is the Throne of Everblight, the Legion’s Battle Engine card. Its purchase and rush cost of 7 CMD/9 CMD respectively makes it slightly expensive, but the Blight Gift rule, which allows you to use either CMD or WAR, makes finding the resources to purchase or rush it much easier. At 4 Power and 6 Health, it seems clearly to be an offensive piece to me, but its resource value of 3 CMD/2 WAR is amazingly good, and makes early Throne purchases a good idea if available. Additionally, it scores 2 VP, warranting attention from anyone looking to build a deck using the orange, blue, or purple detachments.

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Gargantuan Might strikes me as a really nice expansion overall, and is a great buy for anyone playing High Command on the Hordes side. The Battle Engines and 3/3 Resource cards have really opened up the design space quite a bit for every faction, letting Gargantuan Might have a pretty strong impact regardless of your faction.

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