Now it might come as a shock, but I love Trenchers. Far too much if I'm honest. Now the release of the Avenger kit (something I have been very excited about) has given me a reason to invest in the Master Gunner solo (the Avenger's RAT being ridiculiously low and requiring a direct hit to do it's delightful KD).
Now I have Trenchers out the wazoo, I still don't own any commandos but they are next on the list of things to buy, even if that might be a long time because of the impromptu Stormwall. Anyway to prevent from rambling I am very, very close to having enough Trencher stuff to run a 50pts 'Trencher' list. Looking over the theme forces I saw the one that appealed to me...namely Haley2. I mean, you can't get more 'Trencher' than 'jacks with guns, 'jacks with magic hats (this is how one describes an arc node to a 6yr old by the way), Trencher units and Trencher solos...all the Trenchers all the time.
So, a quick look at the list.
Major Haley +5pts
Trencher Infantry (leader and 9 grunts) -10pts
-Officer and Sharpshooter -3pts
Trencher Commandos (leader and 5 grunts) -6pts
Trencher Master Gunner -2pts
Captian Maxwell Finn -3pts
This comes out at 50pts, quite a nice looking list (if like me you get a bit too excited about digging in the mud) but I can hear you crying out...why? What do you gain from this madness? Well imaginary voice I'll tell you. I gain several benifits to help offset the incrediably limited selection of models.
-First off I can redeploy one Trencher Model or unit. Not a really massive benifit but means I gain a bit of tactical leeway. Nice, not amazing.
-Secondly I gain +1 to the Starting Roll. This to me is where it gets good. First turn can be a huge boon to a control caster like Haley. Get up there are stall the arse off the other guy and you start scoring first. Totally worth it.
-Thirdly I gain a trench template for each unit of Trencher Infantry/Trencher Commandos once I have 2 units of the aformentioned units. Basically I get two trench templates. Now this was at first a real 'why?' moment for me. they only get to be placed at 20" and alongside the +2" deploy bonus the Trencher Infantry are stood at the other side of it and usually dug in anyway due to cautious advance. So why the blue hell would I want trench templates...let me tell you with an anecdote. Haley got shot in the face. (great anecdote right?) But if she stands herself in...hmmm say a trench template for cover and say...hmmm has a spell that increases defence against shooting. Yes Def22 against shooting is nice in a list that has a unit that usually doesn't block LOS and another that has Stealth naturally. My trench templates have affectionatly been named 'Haleys Grave' and I usually place them around where she is going to be wanting to stand during the game.
-Forthly is the +2" of deployment. With a list that naturally has a lot of Advanced Deployment and has +1 to start with the 'Caster at the helm being very much into control. it makes for another nice bonus.
Ah but I can hear you again imaginary voice. Yes I do have to give up a few Haley staples. Namely the Squire, Stormclad and Gun Mages.
-The Squire hurts, I won't deny it at all. That thing is golden for increasing the control area on such a powerful feat. The extra point of focus and spell re-roll were gravy on some already deliciously chunky chips. It's been painful not having this in the lists. But I have made more friends without it. Swings and roundabouts I suppose.
-The Gun Mages I'm not feeling quite as badly as I thought I might. They provided a lot of anti-stealth and pushback/KD. The sheer amount of AOE fire a grenadier and Avenger (temporally accelerated too if I'm feeling cheeky) that is more accurate or more indiscriminate depending on the mood of the Master Gunner, can deal with most of the Stealth units out there. The KD effects on the Avenger have helped with the stall game too. All round I'm not really missing them too much.
-The Stormclad, loosing this hurt. The 'jack bullet is a tried and tested method of killing casters. I am curently using the Avenger (notice a theme here...) as the bonded warjack to offset his usually slow speed. He does work alright as a 'jack bullet too if I'm honest. Though seeing as so far people have been surprised when the 'jack that has been thumping out 2 KD AOE's a turn suddenly packs that in as a bad job and comes screaming in swinging what is a surprisingly powerful sword. The killer is actually the lack of Squire...Temporal Acceleration and Telekenisis come out at 5/8 focus. leaving only 3 to allocate to the 'jack going in. Because yes it is usually the bonded 'jack going for it. As a side note I am aware that the Stormclad is available through the theme force as shooting lightning is legitimate 'ranged attack' and so he counts. But without making use of that accumulator and the list leaning more on the ranged attacks he is very much a goose amoung the swans (be dum tish!).
Anyway, those of you who have braved the wall of text shall be rewardeth!
Great reward eh? Bet you're loving it.
'Thumper' here is the Trencher Infantrys trusted grenadier warjack. Having been running about the battlefield as bare metal for as long as I can remember he finally got himself a lick of paint so he can look stylish as he drops explosion after explosion down into the enemy ranks. Being the quintessential Trencher warjack he got first spot on my get the 'jacks done agenda. Next up (should be, I mean seriously has anyone out there ever seen me stick to something?) the Avenger.