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Too good of an article to be not at the Librarium Online. Note i did not write this. Included is the Ogre Big names and magic items usefullness rating fomr 1-10. Also included is why the spangleshard isn't really as great as everyone thinks it is. Cheers!SpangleShard Analysis:Originally Posted by TaladryelFor a long time now, whenever I start to familiarize myself with a new Warhammer army I first flip open the Magic Items section of the army book and try to sort out which of the shiny bitz I'd most like to see on my characters. Ogre Kingdoms being no exception, I thought this the perfect time to document my exploits to form a sort of a guide for aspiring Tyrants everywhere. Thus this article shall focus exclusively on my (exceedingly biased) opinions on the Ogres' magical arsenal as well as their Big Names.
Disclaimer - all of the following shall be my personal opinion and mine own, and as such does not preclude disagreement. There are any number of playing styles and army selection philosophies, and in theory every magic item or Big Name can be used to great effect under the correct set of circumstances. Furthermore, my own opinions change frequently, as witnessed by my recent and complete reversal on Grail Knights (whom I had initially discarded as an utterly useless unit, at least in my own Bretonnian armies).
Thus, thou shalt taketh all of the following with a substantial grain of salt, just as I shalt writeth it while consuming a substantial amount of Dwarfish spirits.
Kineater - the only Big Name limited to Tyrants. The question is really whether Panic tests are much of an issue with a given Ogre army. To wit, if you run a lot of missile screens and have a good grasp of flank protection, you should hardly ever test at all in which case the Tyrant's basic leadership (9) should more than suffice for holding up the line. Having lots of Psych-immune troops (i.e. Maneaters) or the Ragbanner on your main heavy unit should also obviate the need for Kineater. On the other hand, I have distinctly unpleasant memories of one tourney game where my very expensive Black Orc Warlord (also with Ld 9) and his retinue failed a Panic check and fled off the board on the very first turn of the game.
On balance, I give it a 6/10. Sometimes useful, and it will make your center near-immune to Panic. But not necessarily uber-critical to have.
Mountaineater - interesting. All Ogre characters are T5 however, which means that this Big Name largely becomes useful against attacks with S7+. If high-strength attacks are really that worrisome, a mere Spangleshard should suffice. Note â€“ this being one of the very few times when I will recommend the Spangleshard at allâ€¦
Longstrider - potentially quite useful, especially for either a) maneuvering a stand-alone character (e.g. Hunter) or b) executing Bullgut flank charges. In addition, Longstrider allows you to pursue 3D6â€?, which can be key in an army where most melee troops don't really have that option.
8/10. Best for the 3D6â€? pursuit roll (one possible tactic is to team a Longstrider character, e.g. Hunter, with your Tyrant's block and charge them both at the same target - if they break, the Longstrider can give chase while the rest regroups).
Giantbreaker - if your army already includes a Slavegiant, I don't see why you wouldn't slap this name on someone e.g. a Tyrant or a BSB. Especially if you combine it with, say, the Sword of Striking (5 S6 I4 attacks hitting on 2+â€¦not too bad at all).
Yes, you'll have to accept all challenges, but having played Brets, it's a small price to pay for a potentially deadly comboâ€¦I think. Hey, what do I know - I'm half-senile!
I'll rank it as 8/10, only because not every Ogre army under the sun will field a Slavegiant (and hence it's not completely universal). 6/10 if you see having to accept all challenges as a problem (and/or play against Speculum-ed wizards on horseback regularly).
Deathcheater - you know, the cost of this Big Name covers half a unit of Gnoblars. On the other hand, if you're fighting a lot of Elves, you might want to have this as insurance for when the Pansies triumphantly unload 10+ attacks into your hapless Tyrant.
4/10. I'll take the 10 Gnoblars thank you.
Beastkiller - interesting, but if your Tyrant is leading a non-Maneater unit the Immune to Psych property is useless. On the other hand, sticking this on a Hunter may have potential, and it's also the best defense against Slaaneshi magic. Finally, if you just know that your character will be fighting Giants, Dragons, Shaggoths and the like, this Big Name could come in pretty handy (though, arguably, a Tenderizer would do just as good a job of that).
2/10. Spend the 15 points on a Fistful of Laurels (or something else just as useful) instead.
Wallcrusher - now this is a Big Name every Tyrant or Bruiser ought to consider. Especially if ranked units are involved (giving him 2 S6+ impact hits on every charge). Unless, of course, the character's job is something other than hugely inflating your CR score (Kineater comes to mind).
Yes, yes, extra impact hits will only work when you slam into slow and ponderous infantry blocks. Which are slow. And have ranks. Which need to be negated. With more kills. And they're slow.
It makes sense, really, if you can â€śdeliverâ€? your beefed-up Irongut unit on target. At least for the points cost.
9/10. A Tyrant with some Ironguts and Wallcrusher will hit like a ton of bricks, literally.
Mawseeker - hypothetically it is possible to combine this Big Name with say, the Jade Lion, resulting in a +1T for a (mere) 40 points. Fine. I have several issues with this, however.
First, taking the Jade Lion means you won't have a slot for Fistful of Laurels (never mind any of the other useful Big Names), which potentially means more headaches (and more points spent trying to alleviate them).
Second, +1T will only reduce your wounds suffered by 16.7%, i.e. the same amount as Talisman of Protection (but for far fewer points â€“ remember the Jade Lion â€“ and with no painful drawbacks). Ok, sure, you could combine the two and make an indestructible Tyrant (why-ever forâ€¦), but then there is my third and greatest objectionâ€¦
Mawseeker causes Stupidity. I cannot stress that enough. Ok, so you brought the Jade Lion and your chances of failing the test go to a meager 2.8%. Fine. That's still greater than zero, and when I play I do not want any chance of my Tyrant suddenly turning into a drooling idiot at the most critical point of the battle. None at all. Call me old-school, call my play conservative, but that's the way it is. I never, ever, trust my dice, and y'all would do well to do the same.
My personal opinion is 1/10. I know for a fact that others will take the 2.8% failure rate, slap on a Ward Save and live happily ever after. Not I. There's also the little fact that once your Tyrant flees once â€“ which could happen â€“ your chances of going Stupid each turn zoom to 16.7%...
Thundermace - before anyone wets him/her/itself about this one, I would like to point out a singular and devastating drawback in using this weapon.
You only get one attack.
Let me rephrase that. Even against critters with WS5 or less, you'll miss 33.3% of the time. Yes, when you do hit you could â€“ repeat, could - slaughter a dozen infantry or 3 knights. Assuming you get all the partials and actually wound them with your S4 hits. But you'll miss 33.3% of the time, if not 50.0% (especially when in challenges).
I don't like all-or-nothing weapons, as a rule. Unless it's a 10 point club on a cheap Goblin Boss. Which, sadly, leads me to rate this as a 5/10. Decent potential, not nearly enough consistency to compete with any â€śregularâ€? weapon, even a plain GW which will always give you at least 2-3 S7 hits.
The Tenderiser - this has been a point of contention. On the one hand, a simple GW will accomplish virtually the same every time. On the other, if used in challenges (or against multi-wound critters), you'll be paying a 36 point premium off a regular GW for an average of +2.2 Combat Resolution.
This is a really â€śindividualâ€? weapon, in that sense. My instincts - and my tournament experience - tell me that the number of times when the multi-wound function will actually be used in my games won't be very large. But in the grand scheme of things, if you have the extra 36 points to spend, and aren't trying to build the Indestructible Tyrant of Doom (Mawseeker, Jade Lion, Wyrdstone Necklace, Gutmaw, Heavy Armour and Ironfist â€“ sounds nasty, doesn't it), it's not a bad weapon to have.
There. I've said it. Grudgingly so.
So I think I'll rate it as a 7/10. Limited utility in certain tournament settings (in my opinion) and/or against very good opponents (who'll just spend the game trying to take the Tyrant out of the Combat phase altogether), but still very, very useful in certain situations. You're basically paying the points for additional flexibility, which is a concept I can live with.
Siegebreaker - I like this one. It's not splendiferously awesome, but I like it. Many of the big and nasty things out there have pretty low I - especially the rank-and-file chaps (but also Black Orc Warlords, Saurus Oldbloods, Dwarfish scum, etc.). On the other hand, most of the things that have I6+ also tend to come with WS6+, which means you're hitting them on a 4+ regardless. And you get +3S rather than the usual +2. All for just 30 points.
7/10. Like I said, I like this one. Though truth be told it's not quite as flexible as a Tenderiser (even though I rate the two weapons the same).
Skullpucker - 30 points for Killing Blow. No other bonuses. Why. Why, why, why...
Ok, for all you blokes who want proof. Your Tyrant will hit at best 3.33 times per combat phase. That equals 0.56 killing blows per turn. And you're hitting at your basic S5, which screws you up if you're facing anything with armour.
2/10. Moving on...
Bloodcleaver - potentially very useful for a Butcher. However, it does involve him being in combat (and he _is_ only S4 meaning he won't be causing unsaved wounds too often).
Ah, what the hey. 6/10. Just make sure to stick the guy into a big unit of Bulls (or next to your Tyrant).
Mastodon Armour - great if you fancy your Tyrant running around by himself (without the Bullgut, mind you, so not quite as useful), getting sniped by cannons. Alternatively, if you plan to use Ogre MSU with no Standards whatsoever (and so no Lookout Gnoblars) this item could be very handy.
On the other hand, if your Tyrant and his bodyguards plan to spend much of their game in combat, it's a 50 point suit of heavy armour. Albeit a cool conversion idea.
5/10. I don't see it at this point. Maybe on a Hunter.
Greatskull - great for a Tyrant stuck inside a great big unit of Ironguts or some such, since many players will try to throw all sorts of magical nastiness at that one particular unit.
8/10. Not as good for the points as Sizzla's Shiny Baubles, but is pretty good nonetheless.
Bullgut - throw this on with a Longstrider and a good offensive package, and you'll have one mean flank-charging Tyrant. Who, of course, won't be able to lend his great Ld to your main line for a while.
Alternatively, this item could work great on a Hunter. Notice I said â€ścouldâ€?. Specifically, you'd probably have to team the guy with a 5+ strong Ogre unit (to avoid him getting sniped), detach the kitties and hope you can set up a legal flank charge with him at the same time as his â€śparentâ€? unit hits something in the front.
7/10. My only issue is blending those dratted horns properly...
Gut Maw - why you wouldn't use this item with a good weapon and/or Wallcrusher/Giantbreaker/etc. is beyond me. Especially if your opponent likes to waste points on his unit champions. Or hails from Bretonnia.
Mind you not that many good tourney players do, which drops this item's effectiveness in the tourney scene drastically.
6/10. I see it, but wouldn't necessarily do it.
Greedy Fist - the whole thing assumes that there will be a successful saving throw. Given that so many magical weapons out there are high S, no save, or some other unpleasantness...ugh.
3/10. I don't see this one happening. Not against an Oldblood with a Blade of Tzunki or some such.
Cathayan Jet - has potential, especially on a solitary character (Hunter, Bullgut Tyrant, etc.). Not worth it on anyone hidden inside a large unit with a Lookout Gnoblar.
6/10. Totally depends on your character setup.
Spangleshard - to be honest, I initially liked the concept. Then I ran the numbers. Basically, unless you're being smacked with S7+ weaponry, the item's effectiveness in stopping wounds is equal to or worse than that of a 6+ Ward (i.e. Talisman of Protection which costs half as many points). Even against S7+ hits, a Spangleshard is still worse than a 5+ Ward.Is that worth 30 points? Especially when it doesn't/barely works against S3/S4 attacks?
1/10. There are some uses for it. In theory. Especially if the list-building process involves much Dwarfish ale.
Wyrdstone Necklace - hmmm. Giving up a wound with no save whatsoever. Luck Gnoblars don't apply here, by the way (since they allow you to re-roll saves ) - may seem harsh. Then again, if you have 2 Butchers in your army, perhaps not so harsh. And a 5+ Ward is a nifty thing to have, if you've got the points.8/10. The potential wound is a bit of a pain, especially if you're running a Butcher-less army (you know who you are), but it's not too bad as you start off with 5 wounds anyhow.
Gnoblar Thiefstone - he. Hehe. Hehehe. Burn baby burn.
The only downside to this item is that it takes up your "Talismans" slot (so no necklaces, wands, or any other such nonsense). Otherwise, no reason why you shouldn't stick this in your bigger Ogre blocks, especially if you face Magehammer a lot and â€śforgetâ€? to bring enough Butchers/dispel scrolls (and over the past couple of years I've seen more and more Magehammer builds at tourneys).
9/10. Oh, if only my other armies had access to theseâ€¦
Hellheart - great insurance against Magehammer. Especially during mid-game/end-game, when the guy is trying to squeeze every point out of his mages (and feels he can win the game by doing so).
On the other hand, there are so many better Butcher-only items out there...this one just loses out. I'd love to bring one of these to a tourney though.
7/10. Guaranteed to drop your Sports score, under the right circumstances...
Grut's Sickle - this is a tough one. Can be quite useful, especially if you park some Gnoblars next to the Butcher in question. On the other hand, is one extra dice per phase really worth the trouble?
6/10. Can be useful, I'd run something else though.
Halfling Cookbook - given the utter usefulness of both Bonecruncher, Toothcracker and Trollguts, I don't see why you wouldn't take this item for your "frontline, support the Tyrant" Butcher.
Plus it's only 25 points. Oh come on. You know you wanna.
10/10. Find the Halflings!! (Always wanted to say that).
Bangstick - a nice item for drawing out enemy Dispel dice (or just blasting some light cavalry off the field), but takes up your Arcane slot. Which I assume I'll be spending on a Cookbook or a Skullmantle.
7/10. If only this was an Enchanted item...like it would be in so many other WFB armiesâ€¦
Skullmantle - two words. Brain. Gobbler. Har har har.
Also, note that the Ld penalty applies to all Ld tests caused by the Butcher or his unit â€“ including Break and Fear tests . Why this item shouldn't go into your front-line unit is beyond me. In fact, running any Ogre army with at least one Butcher but without the Skullmantle should be reported to the proper authorities, lest the madness spreads.
11/10. I'm not kidding. Uber, uber, uber, uber useful.
Brahmir Statue - on the other hand, it's race-specific which usually kills an item at a tourney-level.
On the other hand, there are a lot of Chaos armies out there, and many of them have pretty high Ld.
So it's up to the player. I'd probably think about slapping this on a frontline character, just to make all those Chaos Knights run away like little girls.
Note however this does not apply to any Break Tests, which reduces the usefulness somewhat.
6/10. Primarily because of all the Chaos armies these days (and all the foolish little humans in GW stores endlessly fascinated with large units of Chosen Knights).
Daemon-Killer Scars - Terror can be a useful thing to have in the right situations. Especially against low-Ld armies who outnumber you greatly (and so won't necessarily flee from failing Fear tests).
You wouldn't care about Terror-causers too, which I guess is a plus.
Naah. 5/10. I'm not saying it's a bad item, I'd just spend my 35 points on something else.
Greyback Pelt - my big issue with this item is that it eliminates Yhetees from your army. Would you rather have 1 model ignoring difficult terrain or 3-6?
I'd go with 3-6. Especially in larger games (where you can "scale up" your Yhetee contingent).
2/10. Unless you don't want to run any Yhetees, in which case it goes to 6/10.
Jade Lion - I guess this is a decent item, especially if you get flank-charged a lot. or have Dragons go after your Tyrant for example.
My issue is potentially you can solve all these things via other means without wasting 30 points and a Talismanic item slot. Then again, if you just want to run in with 15 Ironguts + Tyrant and no flank protection, and don't feel like paying 35 points for a Ragbanner or Kineater, this is a must-have.
6/10. Only because I am fond of Questing Knights and anything else with Re-roll Psych on it. Do remember that once you flee, this item is gone. Gone. Gone. Wow-wow-yeah (cue the Top Gun soundtrack).
Rock Eye - if you play this game long enough, you ought to be able to figure most of these things out for yourself. Hmm. Those Night Goblins are sure enthusiastic about marching straight into my trap. Could they have 3 Fanatics along with them??
It varies. I generally don't do the whole "tell me what's inside" routine but then I'm a nutter who owns, reads, and half-memorizes all of the army books and runs or have at one point run at least half the actual armies.
5/10. Up to the individual player.
Fistful of Laurels - ok, so I'm the guy who preaches having a BSB in every army then makes his first Ogre force without one.
It's actually a useful item regardless. If you do have a BSB, you could stick this on a Hunter and make sure he holds up a ranked up enemy regiment for at least a turn. Alternatively, you could dispense with the BSB altogether (especially if you're of the sort that brings 3 Butchers), and stick this on your Tyrant to make sure he doesn't run off at the first sign of trouble.
8/10. This is a fairly useful item, I think. Though my gut still says a BSB is something a majority of Ogre armies ought to haveâ€¦
Dragonhide - the only BSB-exclusive banner in the army. Makes me miss Banner of the Lady mightily. I guess it's useful, but 60 points? How many 1's do you plan to roll exactly??
6/10. Not bad, but not splendiferously spectacular, either. Besides, I'd rather use almost any BSB's magic allowance to buy armour and a magic sword (the exception being, of course, the utterly nefarious Banner of the Lady).
Ragbanner - slap this on your Ironguts and leave the Kineater name at home. Or something to the effect.
4/10. If you've got the points, it could work. Then again only Ironguts can take magic banners, and a War Banner (or something equally destructive) just seems that much more appetizing.
Cannibal Totem - now you see, here we go again with race-specific items. How many times are you actually going to be fighting armies with lots of models on 40mm bases, hmm?
3/10. Not nearly versatile enough for my tastes.
Bull Standard - considering that your average impact hit will come in at S4/S5 (depending on the unit), this is not a bad thing to have. On the other hand, Ironguts and BSBs are the only ones that can take a magic banner (yes, I'm going to say that again). All those fancy Maneaters, Bulls, Belchers, and so forth just have to do without, the gits - and there I'd either go for Ragbanner or War Banner. Or maybe - maybe - a Dragonhide.
5/10. Useful, yes. Uber-useful, no.
Rune Maw - park your guys next to a unit of Gnoblars and let fur fly. The problem is, after the first time the enemy should wise up and start blasting all your other units.
3/10. Seems nice, but a good old War Banner is better (and less easy to avoid).
At this point, there are clearly things that I like in the Magic Items section (in addition to my old Common Item favourites) - Skullmantle, Skullmantle, Thiefstones, Halfling Cookbook, Wallcrusher, and Skullmantle. On weapons I'm split between Tenderiser (versatility), Siegebreaker (surprise effect) and Sword of Battle with Giantbreaker. Wyrdstone Necklace, Hellheart, Bullgut and Greatskull can also be nice.
On the whole, however, I think Ogres have fewer good Magic item combos than many other armies. Which is actually a good thing though, since this means that instead of wasting points on shiny bitz you can get yourself more Ogres.
That just about does it for this round of endless (and not necessarily all that useful) pontification. For further ramblings, tune in next week, same bat time, same bat channel.If it is easier for people to read, i can take away the quotes. Anywho, Good luck and may the great maw watch over.Originally Posted by TaladryelAt first glance, the Spangleshard seems like a veritable godsend. Amaze your friends! Dazzle your enemies! Shrug off cannon wounds as mere pinpricks! How could GW have possibly made the mistake of giving us such a supremely useful yet incredibly cheap magic item?
Which is where my jaded and cynical side decided to crunch some numbers (commentaries from certain members of the Ogre Stronghold having nothing to do with prompting said decision whatsoeverâ€¦).
The assumptions - a T5 character is hit with S3, S4, S5, S6 and S7 attacks (wounding on 6s, 5s, 4s, 3s and 2s, respectively).
The probability of rolling any one number (1-6) on a D6 while rolling to wound against said T5 character is always the same (16.7%). Similarly for Spangleshard rolls (chance of rolling any number from 1 to 6 while trying to â€śnegateâ€? a successful wound roll is 16.7%).
The chances of causing a wound are:
S3 hit = 16.7% (1/6 chance of wounding)
S4 hit = 33.3% (2/6 chance of wounding)
S5 hit = 50.0% (3/6 chance of wounding)
S6 hit = 66.7% (4/6 chance of wounding)
S7+ hit = 83.3% (5/6 chance of wounding)
The Spangleshard will negate the wound roll if it is higher by 1 or more.
Chance to Wound - (16.7% * Chance to roll 1 over + 16.7% * Chance to roll 2 over + 16.7% * Chance to roll 3 over + 16.7% * Chance to roll 4 over) = Adjusted Chance to Wound (ACTW).
In other words, there are two dice rolls made consecutively. The first determines your â€śwoundâ€? score, and whether you wound successfully. The second negates the wound if you roll 1-4 â€śhigherâ€? than the first roll (it is impossible to roll 5 higher, since the lowest â€śwoundingâ€? roll is a 2).
So in the case of a S5 hit, the calculation would be something like: Chance to Wound with S5 â€“ Chance to Wound on a 5 and rolling 6 with the Spangleshard â€“ Chance to Wound on a 4 and rolling a 5-6 with the Spangleshard = ACTW at S5. You can't wound on a 3, so the calculation stops there (otherwise it would continue).
The results of the calculation are:
ACTW (S3 hit) = 16.7% - 0.0% = 16.7% (obviously)
ACTW (S4 hit) = 33.3% - (16.7% * 16.7%) = 30.6%
ACTW (S5 hit) = 50.0% - (16.7% * 16.7%) â€“ (16.7% * 33.3%) = 41.7%
ACTW (S6 hit) = 66.7% - (16.7% * 16.7%) â€“ (16.7% * 33.3%) â€“ (16.7% * 50.0%) = 50.0%
ACTW (S7+ hit) = 83.3% - (16.7% * 16.7%) â€“ (16.7% * 33.3%) â€“ (16.7% * 50.0%) â€“ (16.7% * 66.7%) = 55.6%
Net Chance to Wound, adjusted by the Spangleshard â€śrollâ€?:
S3 hit = 16.7%, shard reduction = 0.0 percentage points
S4 hit = 30.6%, shard reduction = 2.8 percentage points
S5 hit = 41.7%, shard reduction = 8.3 percentage points
S6 hit = 50.0%, shard reduction = 16.7 percentage points
S7+ hit = 55.6%, shard reduction = 27.8 percentage points
Even if you stand there and get pelted with cannon fire, the Spangleshard only drops your chances of avoiding a wound by max 27.8 percentage points. Moreover, most attacks you'll be facing are less than that which implies even less of a reduction.
At the same time, a 5+ Ward (Wyrdstone necklace) will always work 33.3% of the time and will categorically work against lower-strength hits. If you're not into having a wound put on your character 16.7% of your games (which, mind you, can be healed by Gut Maw), you can take the good old reliable Talisman of Protection (Common item, 6+ Ward) and get a solid 16.7% chance of avoiding a wound at all strength (so the Spangleshard will only outperform against hits with S7+).
Bet you dimes to dollars the GW designers never bothered to run this math before costing the shard at 30 points...
Choose the best answer to fit in the blank:
_____ney is the root of all evil!