‘Tis The Season To Say WAAAAAGH!

Format: Casual Golden Age (Modern Recommended)

Well, I briefly alluded to in my last post, but my FLGS finally got its restock of the two Warhammer team packs. This meant that I could finally get a second copy of the Star Wolves as well as the Orks. Just in time for the holidays! This week, I thus decided that…

‘Tis The Season To Say WAAAAAGH!

The Team:  Let’s make Big Choppa into a REALLY Big Choppa.

This isn’t a full theme team by any stretch. But this strategy is very much based around Orks; they’re the key to the whole thing working.

The card I built around for this team is Ork Nob: Big Choppa. The more characters get KO’d, the bigger he gets. Ideally, I would aim to have at least 2 on the board (not hard with it being a 2-cost), and getting to 20 damage shouldn’t (in theory) be too hard with enough KO’s.

There are two ways by which I expected to KO characters. First up, Grey Hunter and Staff of The Forgotten One, used with Malekith’s global. Have the Hunter active, use the Staff, use Malekith’s global to KO the Hunter, and KO all opposing characters. Alternatively, use Banshee for the same effect if Grey Hunter is Shrieked or Blob’d. Banshee requires a bit more coordination, however; you’ll need to KO it (probably with Malekith) the turn before you draw the Staff. Definitely go for the Hunter first.

The second KO generator is useful if my opponent doesn’t field as many characters. Mind you, I would still use the whole Hunter + Staff shenanigans, but this will not always generate enough damage on its own. When that happens, I will use Ork Boy with Stone Golem. KO 2 Ork Boys to purchase a Stone Golem, and because Ork Nob is active, Ork Boy comes right back. Repeat 3 times, and that’s 8 KO’s (2 Ork Boys KO’d x 4), meaning you’ve just triggered the Nob’s ability 8 times, giving each Nob at least +8A/+16D. Yes, seriously!

With our core strategy taking up so many cards, this doesn’t give us many spots for extra control or counters. I put in Warbiker just in case someone decides to go Dreadnaught on me (re-fielding those Ork Nobs would really hurt). Resurrection serves for ramp and churn, and Raised Shields serves as a secondary win condition; if I can’t wipe your board, at least I can give my Ork Nobs Overcrush. The global on Raised Shields can also help give me a bit of extra damage if needed.

With that said, on to the games!

Game 1:

Well, Dragons are back! Gold Dragon + Ring of Winter team, fairly predictable, and a horrible matchup against my (initially) tiny orks. He just got his Dragon early (got it on the field on T2 due to a lucky Ring of Winter draw) and he swung in repeatedly, with me having absolutely no answer to his Breath Weapon (Stone Golem could’ve helped slow him down, but his Gold Dragons hit me way too fast). He won.

0-1

Game 2:

Bye! We were an uneven number, and I got the short end of the stick. It happens.

1-1

Game 3:

For my second (and last) real match of the evening, I went up against Dreadnaught + Swarm. This was a weird game for both of us; my Staff Would. Not. Roll. Twice, I had a win set up if Staff rolled, twice it didn’t roll. My opponent missed her own stuff a ton of times as well (she ought to change her Dreadnaught dice!). I eventually set up a big enough attack just by KO’ing her low-toughness stuff (field Banshee, then Fabricate Banshee + Hunter to do 2 damage to her whole board) and attacking with 3 Ork Nobs. This weakened her enough that the following turn, when Staff (finally!) rolled, I managed to wipe her board and deal enough damage for the win. I won, but it was too close for comfort.

2-1

Post-Mortem:

Obviously, I only got to play two games, one of which was a complete massacre. Not the best sample size, but I can still glean some useful lessons.

-Relying on Staff of the Forgotten One, in a build where I have to buy tons of cheap dice, is really annoying: bag control became a major issue in the game I eventually won. Putting Seething Corruption, where I could’ve bought more than one, would’ve made my life easier in this regard.

-That’s a weird problem to have, but I found myself wishing I had expensive characters to purchase for those turns where I rolled energy everywhere. Would’ve made my bag substantially less clogged.

-Due to the large amount of dice (typically: 2 Nobs, 2 Boys, 1 Hunter, 1 Staff) needed for this strategy to fire off, it gets slow. Big Entrance would definitely help, but then you end up with yet another die floating around your bag, which makes it harder to get your Staff, reinforcing my first issue. Blargh!

-GDM is a giant pain in the rear when using this strategy (predictably enough).  ‘Nuff said.

Overall, this is a good concept in theory, but making it work in practice is less than efficient. It was worth trying out, but I don’t see myself revisiting it anytime soon. A commenter on jourdo’s previous article suggested using Dreadnaught alongside Ork Nobs as a better strategy; it definitely sounds like it could be substantially more reliable. I may try it out sometime.

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