Samurai thoughts

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Ashley408
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Samurai thoughts

Right time for some Ryu discussion

Firstly, has anyone been using Kenya Takashi?

I like his robustness and ability to tie up 2-3 other models but he also feels expensive.

Secondly has anyone had success with the Samurai theme?  I run a pretty solid Claws of the Dragon ashigaru theme but I'm struggling to get an all samurai list that works well.

The following could work:

Katsumoto 12 rice

iiju 9 rice

Genji 9 rice

Bachiko 7 rice

Retainer 7 rice

Young Takashi 6 rice

So six figures, tactician, order, command double inspiration but feels a bit combat heavy and exposed to ki feat attacks...

Anyone have a better list that complies with the Samurai theme restrictions?

Axiam
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What are the restrictions?

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HMK
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Only samurai, shugujenja, kami and the dragon are allowed. And there you also have the awnser. You cant go wrong with the twins. Matsu, specially the 8 rice version, can do so much for your list, handling out a couple of stunned markers or just put a table wide +2 modifier for shooting if thats your opponents thing. If short on rice, the 6 rice version of matsu isnt so bad either with a single slam shot each turn. The dragon is awesome. I like the alternate version with Mirage ki feat best. Very expensive in a list with already almost only expensive models, but i like him.  I think the anchester also is a nice addition. Very good in melee and can boost the others by his special channel trait. Just Beware not to give out or boost with too much ki or the ghost will lose all his life too fast. Downside with the anchestor is that he is insignificant. 

I usually play 4-5 models at42 rice and 5-6 at 50 rice. Its not a super competitive list, but neither is it a total push over. I find i do best when the dragon is in my lists. The only mini that is auto included in a samurai themed list is the Young takashi. He is cheap and can inspire more expensive models. 

Never played Kenta. Looks sort of defensive in nature, but maybe more usefull with ashigaru vs scary things. Fear really isnt that much trouble for samurais. I think lady oka looks more interesting for the same rice if you want a more defensive mindes samurai. Or just find a rice somewhere and go full offense with Hiro. He is a fun samurai to play anyway

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Sorry, Kenta was 11 rice, i thought he was 10. Yeah... i think i like hiro a lot more. But its a pretty miniature.

Axiam
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I don't play Ryu but for a different and possibly unique samurai list it would be interesting for me to see how the following does:

Katsumoto and Ryoko with 2 retainers for 36rc on 4 models leaving 6 or 14 rice for Matsu or Akio/Dragon. I think you can also squeeze 2 more samurai/shugenja/Kami in for 14 rice with Bachiko/ancestor and std Matsu for 50 (to gain more activations over elite combat/control). I also do not know if any Ryu specific special cards would fit well into this as I do not have them.

On idols: you can use Katsumoto's 4ki on turn 2 to command 2 retainers (that ran to be in connection with the idols), rotate both and use the remaining command slot on Ryoko to time skip for 3 of his 4 ki. Thus locking down the first victory point. I don't actually know what the samurai theme's benefits are but this seems quite a good combination for several scenario's in which you can 'quick steal' the first or last VPs (especially for set prayer based scenarios, where you can get a prayer in or zone control to overload a zone and end the turn unopposed in a scoring turn). Following that you'll need to tie up the remaining idols/opponents models/zones to try and last out the match but martial prowess should see you able to kill off swarming lists and Ryoko can give an extra boost once per game to remove exhaustion from models after using command 3/friendly twice (possible again in turn 4) to gain advantage such as outnumbering and surprise to kill a few models and use that advantage to regain Idols/prayer superiority or zone control to help secure a second and possibly third VP.

The list may struggle a little on VIM missions but samurai don't seem that easy to kill in my experience and if you went with the ancestor you can add sixth sense for protection/anti camp as well as additional ranged defence for the important models should you need it thanks to Ryoko-Sha.

I'd be interested to hear what you think of the theory behind it and where it may fall down in practice :)

It would also be good to see Ryoko-Sha being fielded as I don't think I ever have and he is very much an interesting support + combat hybrid for 10 rice.

Axiam

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The bonus is you start with an extra ki, that you gain some ki when you kill more expensive models (so...that rarely happens since many samurai cost a lot), you get a strength bonus when one of your own dies. But the real bonus isnt written on the theme card, its the Young takashi profile that can only be included in the samurai theme.

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I guess mine would be similar to the above but with Ryoko Sha and an 8 rice model instead for the command everyone and time stop/reverse combo. Alt Matsu would be good for anti range or the ancestor for sharp/ki boost and healing. :)

Axiam

Ashley408
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Good thoughts everyone.

I agree Matsu is a great addition although if caught in combat she can get a beating.  The ancestor is definitely one I'd like to try but I always worry about taking an 8 point model that can't do objective actions.

I have run the Dragon (the alternative version) and he is good but also surprisingly fragile.  It's amazing that supposedly one of the toughest, most expensive figures doesn't have martial prowess or 4 MS so I have occasionally had a bad defensive roll and he can soon get chopped up especially if outnumbered.

Never tried Ryoko, seems like a one-trick pony but agreed it is a very strong trick!

My main issue is that with six figures (at say 50 rice) having two who either need to be available and not in combat to win VPs or need to avoid a fight puts the other four under a lot of pressure.  

Maybe I have been spoilt running 8-9 ashigaru all the time!

 

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Ok revised list

Theme: Blood of the Dragon

Katsumoto 12 rice

use order to get two samurai to two idols or middle zone in turn one and go for first VP

Iiju 9 rice

he's a must take and can inspire young takashi 

Genji 9 rice

a very solid samurai, the list needs two 4 MS samurai

Takashi ancestor 8 rice

his ability to move through combat and soulless could be crucial for taking out annoying support models in the opponents back field such as puppet master.  His healing could be critical and due to the theme card he starts with 9 ki!

Young takashi 6 rice

cheap, good armour, lack of martial prowess tiresome but can be boosted by iiju, idolise could be used on Katsumoto 

Matsu (basic) 6 rice

her slam attacks could level the field in terms of activations and stop being overwhelmed.  Just got to keep her out of combat but iiju could inspire her if needed.

ok, why no time samurai?  I like him but once Katsumotos abilities have helped get the first VP, I doubt my opponent will leave either samurai out of BtB to use their special abilities, the ancestor provides some very useful abilities to help the rest of the group and take out controlling figures from the enemy which is this lists weakness.

on the dragon, I love him but I find he either has great games or rubbish ones! Even with Mirage, I've had it fail and then him tied up by a basic enemy model. I think he is a bit like the oni, looks great but actually not that competitive.  Maybe I'm playing him wrong so comments welcome, there's clearly dragon fans out there!

With my new list, you'll have to play well but this list should get a draw or 2-1/1-0 victory if played properly. The main problems will be someone else with a good early VP grabbing tactic or bad dice as losing one or more figures early on will be painful. 6 health isn't that much to enemy figures with sharp or armour piercing...

 

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The anchester got a limit of 8 ki so wont benefit from that extra ki. I do however read it like he will gain back when killing stuff due to the theme, somebody correct me if im wrong. 

The list will surely work. I would approach a bit diffrently. I would probobly never, unless i have to, use inspire on the Young takashi. He is support, there to buff the fightern and to score objectives, and merly average at fighting. Neither should katsumoto see much combat if possible. His strongest asset is the dominate ki feat in my mind. Very usefull to be able to determine the order your opponent have to activate. Order can be nice too, i use that from time to time, but unless there is a major advantage i rarely if ever use command. You will find your guys tired/exhausted quickly by using it when you can get almost the same benefit from using dominate. Tactitian is always nice.

i would also try to switch out genji for somebody more interesting. Apart from 4 MS he doesnt bring much to the table. His brother looks better imho. Ability to prone people is nice, or just push them away. I myself like the vanilla samurai with force back attack. Given its highly situational, but forcing your way into a zone can be very unsuspected for instance. He can also benefit from both inspire and idolise to get 5 MS. Those last until end phase too, so all of the Sudden that pretty plain samurai gets kinda mean. He got feint as a ki feat to, so can be a lot more killy than you might think. Swapping genji for him would save you a rice for something nice like hotais coin, or vitality, an arashi fan, the deflection card or whatever card you like best. But thats just how i would play it.

 

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So what does young takeshi have/ bring?
The ancestor gaining the additional heals from kills would be powerful if not 'non-soulless' or 'samurai' specified in the wording of the ki benefit.
I still think Roll with 3MS, counter attack defence and martial prowess is strong, especially if backed up by the sharp possibly surprise and outnumbering ancestor attacks if you need to free Ryoko-Sha up in the rear guard for his feats. You only need him free for two rounds when using command, especially as Katsumoto gets the extra ki from the theme for the feat to command four models in turn 2 without possibility of response from the opponent.
Either way it looks like a strong list (I usually play ninjas so 6 models that have real kill capability despite being support seems like a luxury) ;)

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The Young takashi got a feat called idolize, which works exactly like inspire but instead requires that the target is more expensive... and since that is everybody that can go in the theme except for the original matsu takashi, i say that is pretty awesome. 

i have never played the time samurai, so cant really say much about him. Looks very interesting and a lot diffrent than most minis in the game. Im not sold on the actual miniature tho... 

 

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Thanks.  Yes you are right. 8 is the limit.

I like the critical strike attack (0) on genji and this brother uses the same figure as young Takeshi.

The Takashi samurai is a good alternative to get a deflection card.

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CSA is undercosted at (0) and one of the best offensive assets available in Ruy. Genji looks right in a setup like this imo. Katsumotos Order is a great Tempo swing too. Ususally it´s chumps getting pushed up early into the midfield, but when it´s Samurai there´s a difference.

The Eagle shares the nest. The Dragon burns it. Join the Black Eagle and crush the usurpers!

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Katsumoto's command has no range limit either so he can literally sit in the back field until turn 2-3 giving 1st turn order and 2nd turn command benefit with Ryoko Sha ending after all of your activations are completed and stay out of everyone's combat range but move up with the commands (a bit gamey but effective to secure the VP). Turn 3 can be used to get more into the thick of the battle and swing things more in favour of the samurai and if free for another round of command plus time reverse in turn 4 you can manipulate all the idols/prayers to your facing and then refresh the turn so you can defend them without needing to turn them all again. Would take some skill getting your models out of combat for the beginning of turn 4 to achieve it but against a lot of lists opponents will be losing models by this point or disengaging themselves to get to the scenario objectives so hopefully enough would be free to be effective. The extra activations are then used as normal to go on the offensive or use a 3rd round of command to re-engage the enemy models that would be able to influence scenarios totems.

To be fair it's all theory craft at this point and probably fails in the field but I like the idea of having some time masters fighting alongside a ghost of their ancestors! But I should finish painting the models I've already bought before buying a fourth warband ;)

Axiam

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Good thinking.  I'm practicing for the grand masters with a ashigaru list but once that's done, I'll play around with an all samurai list.  My ancestor is painted and ready to go!

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I figured I'd post here instead of starting a new thread. I'm trying to work out a Blood of the Dragon list at 50 rice. So far I've got:

Katsumoto (Battle Plans, Elixir of Vigor)
Hiro (Hotei's Coin)
Hagane
Matsu the Thunder (or is it the Storm - I can never remember)
Young Takashi

The idea is that I can leverage the combination of Katsumo's abilities and Pass Tokens to figure out where my opponent is going and react accordingly. With so few models, victory is achieved through choosing where fights happen, who which models get to engage, and when. Generally I've found that Samurai are fairly resistent to Opposed Ki Tests with their Iron/Strong Mind. And the change to Leadership means that Fear really isn't an issue with this list most of the time.

Out-activations can be troubling and I don't have any experience playing this list against true hordes. Most of my games have been againts my buddy's Blessed of Orochi List and he caps out at 7 models.

Comment & Critiques are welcome!

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Looks good but the the latest errata means Prefecture cant use the Elixor of Vigor card which is annoying! see the last page of the August 2017 errata.  I think there was some nice combo using it which the rules gurus have neffed.

Sorry!

Good list though.  Iiju could be a good replacement for Hagane and be able to inspiure Young Takashi. Gets you a spare rice point which with the spare one from the Elixir could be used to buy some ranged defence or a card to help against opposed ki attacks.  You don't want one of your few models being confused or controlled!

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You mean the Restriction (Prefecture of Ryu)?

ONLY the Prefecture can use the Elixir of Vigor.

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Hi Ash, you mentioned playing around with Katsumoto and Ryoku-sha after the Masters. Did you get around to giving that a go?

Cheers,
Adam (your first opponent at the Masters) ;)

Axiam

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I'd love to hear some ryoku-sha reports.

Grand Master of Bushido (Smog Con '14)

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I may have to buy him, and a bunch of Ryu samurai, just to see how broken I can make him be ;)

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I always thought he could be really powerful with pass tokens and his feats.  Also he's another support model but when he's done his two once-per-game feats he's still a Samurai with decent stats.

Grand Master of Bushido (Smog Con '14)

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Anyone using Akio or is 13 rice just a little too hi in a fraction that already has a lot of above average rice cost models?

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Akio's really good. But as with most cases in this game, it's really difficult to judge how good a model is in a vaccuum. His 13 Rice cost reflects the fact that he's a solid support model *and* he's got some of the best duelist stats in the game.

His Kenjutsu Sensei is *really* good. Anyone with a Special Attack/Defense (1) can benefit from it. So he makes other support models  like Katsumoto, Ryoko-Sha, Ilju Makoto better. He can even make Ashigaru pretty threatening by giving them Powerful Attack (1) or counter an opponent's attempts at disrupting you via Jump Up. Armor Piercing is also great in the Ryu vs. Ryu mirror match. Don't forget that he can Kenjustu Sensei himself!

As for Ryoko-Sha.

I have him and I'm going to work him into my play rotation. So far, here's what I'm thinking at 50 Rice.

Katsumoto w/ Battle Plans
Mizuchi the Storm
Matsu the Thunder
Ryoko-Sha
Young Takashi

Again, a low model count list. The difference between this and the one above is that I have no MS4 models. This warband relies on Stun debuffs from Mizuchi and Matsu to even the odds.

There are some potential tricks here using Katsumoto's abilities allowing for multiple activations and then auto-ending the turn with Ryoko-Sha. I'm not sure about how this will play, but I'm curious to see if it can become more than the sum of its parts.

Also, question about Mizuchi the Storm's unique range attack rules. The wording makes it sound like he can keep bouncing his Ranged Attack until it misses. Is this actually the case?