Thursday, August 18, 2011
Theorymachining the Khador Marauder
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.
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.
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?