Greetings, I'm back again. This time to let everyone know my success and failings using a new Warlock.
I have played Thagrosh for a very long time and had never really considered using another caster. After realising this I put on my brave hat and decided to take the plunge, I am going play with a new caster.
This was a daunting decision for me (being so reliant on the prophet) but I figured if I want to be a better player then I will have to branch out and increase my experience.
I looked at the various Legion casters for a long time before finally making my decision.. I would play Bethayne.
I looked at her stats in the book, studied her spell list and decided that this would be a great change from Thagrosh, and help me challenge myself to be a more rounded player.
Her stats are not particularly impressive, in combat she is not bad.. due to Corrosion and having 2 initial attacks. Her spell list however, did look rather tempting. The idea of having a more offensive spell caster really appealed to me and of course the idea of being able to channel spells again through Belphagore was a great prospect. It is something I have not done for many years. Finally there was Flesh Meld.
Having a closer look at the spell list I tried to work out how I could make it work with the selection of units that I like to use.
Ashen Veil immediately jumped out at me as a great spell to use when engaging the enemy close combat unit in close. Reducing their MAT could make the difference with the high DEF as I tend to rely on this to keep the models alive (my theory is if you can't hit me, my ARM doesn't matter).
Blood thorn is very nice, giving a unit Corrosion on their attacks (and applying it to the ranged weapons makes this really nice). However, as both this and Ashen Veil are upkeep spells, getting them onto the right units at the right time looked like something I would have to work on.
This looks like a fantastic spell to cast on a beast or unit going up against the high DEF juicy targets. Also of benefit on multi wound units, allowing them to recover from any damage they have sustained, and is another useful upkeep spell.
So far the 3 upkeep spells Bethayne has access to look very nice. I hope they will not compete too much, being used on the same units at the same time. One of them seems perfect for casting on the unit that is going to take on the high MAT enemy models in combat. One will be a great assistance to units like Striders, making their ranged attacks more potent against multi-wound and high ARM targets. The other will be useful on the beasts, recovering from damage and helping them to save some Fury to gain extra attacks.
The last 2 spells are also rather nice.
Eruption of Ash
Eruption of Ash allows me to target a unit and potentially take out several models at a time.
This should enable me to manoeuvre enemy models (to a limited extent) into better positions to attack and clear lanes for other models to take advantage of.
Litany of HateThis is Bethayne's feat, and one that looks rather nice. Boosting magic attack and damage rolls will be a great advantage to several Legion units, and of course boost Bethayne's spells.
It also allows frendly faction warbeasts to use there Animi for free, something that is going to come in very useful I imagine, and as it's all friendly warbeasts, something that could be used to great affect in a larger game with 2 caster per player on the table.
So far so good, a nice caster with a good spell list (and a big change from Thagrosh's spells) but there was still one thing I would need to get to grips with, Belphagor.
Looking at this beast one thing became apparent early on, its a bodyguard/warlock assistant, not a frontline beast.
It can take a decent amount of damage for a light beast, and has very good ARM, but it's DEF means its going to be taking a lot more hits than I would like.
With immunity to just about everything (effect wise, Cold, Corrosion, Electricity and Fire!!) and of course the ever standard Eyeless Sight and Blood Creation.
This beast is a channeler for Bethayne, so at last I can keep the caster safe and still use spells to good effect (without taking the one shot Spell Martyrthat is) and it is a companion, something that I have never used before.
It's Animus is very nice, giving it a nice ability to damage infantry and make it rather dangerous for them to approach it. More importantly this can be given to Bethayne, so she can have a certain degree of safety if she is exposed.
Where this model combination gets most interesting is its ability to Flesh Meld.
There is something unique with this combination and I am looking forward to trying it out in a game. Until I do this and see how it performs I don't feel like I can give a good opinion on how well it will work. It seems to be a good defensive option, boosting the ARM and damage potential of the caster, but also making it a bigger target and making her easier to hit. Only time will tell how well I will be able to get this ability to work.
I recently played my first game with this caster, and can safely say without any intrepidation that I screwed up.
It was a 15 point game against a new player, and I used Bethayne and Belphagor very poorly, my positioning, spell usage, offensive decision making, all poor. I was still trying to use Thagrosh, but with a completely different caster, so this was a fairly obvious loss for me.
My opponent played well, he looked and took his time, carefully making his moves and punishing me for being careless, it was an outcome well deserved by my opponent and also a good one for me, it gave me a great wake up call to pay more attention and work harder to improve my game.
I have spent a fair bit of time since then working out how to get more from this caster and will be playing her again in a couple of weeks.
I will have an update on this caster with my learning experience after that game and a round up of what I have learnt so far.
If there is anything I have missed let me know in the comments below, advice and pointers are always welcome.