Thursday, August 18, 2011

Theorymachining the Khador Marauder

For some unexplained reason I like the Marauder but I find that I don't field him as often as I do my other 'Jacks.  Why is that?

When you first look at him, take away his Combo Smite and he is very average across the board.  He's basically just a chassis with two Ram Pistons that can hit as hard as the Kodiak's fists.  So his stats are somewhat uninspiring. 

Add to that fact that for 7 points, you can buy A LOT of other things; Min unit Kayazy, Doom Reavers, Widowmakers and the Marksman.  Most people would take those choices because they are great at what they do and are definitely worth their points. 

So now we have the Marauder. 

His Offensive Abilities

The one thing that makes the Marauder a Marauder is his Combo Smite.  It allows him to do a slam from standing still and gives you a P+S 20 hit.  You don't need to charge in over 3" away for this like regular slams.  With this attack, you can do severe damage by charging first, slamming the target into something else, and with pButcher's feat you get P+S 20 plus 5D6 damage.  That's roughly 37 points of damage on average rolls.  I've taken out Thunderhead this way.  It is massive amounts of damage.

Staying with pButcher, the Marauder can also get Fury which grands him +3 to melee damage rolls bringing his pair of pistons to a nice P+S 19 each.  So he has some offensive punch.

His Defensive Abilities

Being a Khadoran 'Jack, the Marauder enjoys the benefits of ARM 20 and is another thing your opponent has to deal with as it lumbers across the battlefield.  Starting at the Kodiak, the higher tier Jacks have ways to protect them-- insane armor of the Devastator, pathfinder and steam cloud for the Kodiak, Shield of the Spriggan... etc.  But even lacking these, the Marauder is still sitting at ARM 20.

His Utility

What really separates the Marauder from the Beserker and the Juggernaut is his utility.  The Combo Smite is good not only for doing massive damage but it also clears lanes, knocks things down which forces the opponent to spend focus getting Jacks up and the knocked down models allow other units to hit in melee with ease. 

Having access to the Combo Smite also should allow the Marauder to shine in Scenario play by knocking opposing Heavies out of the control zones.

His Best Casters

As mentioned before pButcher really helps the Marauder to shine on the battlefield.  Full throttle helps him hit his first attack in melee which grants the Combo Smite.  He can also give Fury for added damage like we talked about earlier and Butcher's feat allows us to roll the 5D6 of damage that we love and our opponents cringe at.

Another caster I would consider is eSorscha.  Not considered a 'Jack caster but she does have Boundless Charge giving the Marauder an increased threat range to charge and get off his Combo Smite.  On her feat, any damage above armor would be doubled.  So best case scenario, a Marauder charges and Combo Smites the target into something else.  That would be P+S 20 plus 4D6 of damage.  The Heaviest of heavies would usually be around ARM 21 or 22 so that's dice minus 2.  And all that damage you roll is doubled.  Wow, that sounds good to me!

At lower point levels when you are looking for that added punch at a cheaper cost, I would consider 2 Marauders and wait for eSorscha's feat turn.  I might have to try that.

At higher point games, the Marauder might be a real bargain for the utility that he brings.  Definitely not your Main 'Jack but could definitely play backup to the likes of Beast-09 or a Spriggan, helping them by opening charge lanes or knocking down Heavies for them to hit.

Worth Taking?

That remains to be seen but I'd like to find out as Theorymachining has produced some good ideas.  

What do you think?  Have you seen the Marauder or faced him often?  If so, how did he do?          


  1. Combo Smite is a special attack. You cannot do special attacks as charge attacks, unless the rule specifically says so. Am I correct?

  2. It's a little confusing but because the Combo Smite is a "melee" special you get the bonus from the charge:

    Prime Mk2 p.47 "It (a model that completed a successful charge) must use its action to make a combat action, choosing to make either initial melee attacks or (if it can make a special attack with a melee weapon) a melee special attack."

  3. You can do Special Attacks, but not Power Attacks.

    Power Attacks are specifically prohibited from being made on the charge per page 51 of Prime. No such prohibition exists on page 36 for Special Attacks.

    Anyway, the Marauder. I own one but have yet to take my Khador army to battle. It's in my 50 point list, though, which is a pButcher list, and he joins the Juggernaut and Devastator in the Butcher's battlegroup, ready to be Full Throttled up and rammed down the enemy gullet. I can see the use in using him to set up lanes or clear spaces for the other battlegroup pieces to move through, or for the ranged pieces to shoot through. He's a good solid budget beatstick; not quite as focus efficient as the Berserker but a bit tougher and less inclined to go bang if overstressed.

  4. I was also reading on the forums that he's a good combo with a mortar, Destroyer, or Behemoth because once he knocks something down, it's pretty much auto hits on bombards ^^.

    I'm pretty stoked to try him out in my next game. I like pButcher too and like bringing the Kodiak. Those two allow for great utility and fun things to do tactically.

  5. My second-fave jack; 'e's a good lad; works well with mortars but sometimes tends to slam targets out of range.

    I find he's great for clearing lanes for assassination runs and a pair of them can really ruin a heavy. With conferred rage (Charge for free, +2 SPD and MAT when eButcha cacks something) This guy can hit even the Cryxian nasties with little effort.

    I've run 3 Marauders with 2 Devastators and either a marksman or mechaniks or Koldun Lord with ebutcher and had a good run for about two years now. The Mk II increase for combo smite damage is bloody awesome.

  6. Also with eSorscha's feat on, I've taken out two jacks with a hit each.

    The good thing is being able to aim your slams properly to ensure the most models get hit.

    The party never starts until you get a pair of Marauders.

  7. Appreciate it Christopher! I like my Marauder so perhaps he needs a brother :D I theorymachined two Devastators once and dreamed of running them at the enemies caster. Seems like a lot to deal with and if you use them with a caster that increases speed-- loads of fun. :P