There are various approaches to building a Warband and players have been experimenting with many builds, focussing on aggressors, defenders and the Soul harvesting option of the game.
I have always preferred a balanced approach to my gaming and so this is my natural approach to making a Warband in Judgement. I prefer to compete in all aspects of the game and having numerous options at my disposal makes it more difficult for my opponent to counter. If one avenue to victory closes I like having other options that I can use. This first post will discuss my ideas for a “balanced” Warband of 5 heroes.
My ideal setup is 2 aggressors, 1 Soulgazer, 1 Defender and 1 supporter. The synergy between different heroes dictates and guides the choices I make so I will discuss two of my more successful builds and explain the reasons for those choices.
Allandir (aggressor), Rakkir (aggressor), Zaron (soulgazer), Marcus (defender), Piper (supporter)
Allandir works well in this list as he is quite vulnerable but with Marcus, Zaron’s skeletons and Piper blocking charges and tying up enemy heroes, he can sit back and take shots all game. If my Warband did not have as many models in the advanced position I would reach for Zaffen as he is more tanky or Istariel as she can use her Blaze ability to escape a tricky situation.
Rakkir is one of the biggest damage dealers in Judgement, his fate ability (Toxin) delivers 2d6 damage ignoring RES. Good placement of Shadow Orbs (placed by Rakkir and/or Zaron) gives him great mobility and allows him to escape back to his Effigy, if the situation gets dangerous, allowing him to bank his Souls.
Zaron was the obvious choice in this list. The synergy with Shadow Orbs and Rakkir was too good to ignore. Zaron activates first can advance and place a Shadow Orb, Rakkir then Shadow steps to the Orb and charges an unsuspecting enemy hero. Zaron currently is the only hero that can summon other models and his skeletons, though weak, still can contest Shrines, engage enemy heroes, helping in the ganging up/distracted rules and just being a nuisance. Once Zaron gets to level 2 the Explode ability causes headaches for your opponent.
I chose Marcus for several reasons. Rakkir tends to run off on his own and not really hang around but is vulnerable and is a target for enemy attacks. Marcus can control the Shrine and use Protective Stance to help Rakkir’s defences. The use of his Wall can be a game winner, protecting the vulnerable heroes like Zaron and Allandir from attack. His Shield Bash attack, where he knocks enemy heroes down, is very powerful. Since I only have 2 dedicated aggressors, Marcus’ contribution to melee helps to somewhat alleviate the lack of raw damage output.
Piper, the mischievous elf. Piper is an interesting hero, I chose him as he is like a “jack of all trades” style of hero. His Duplicate Self ability makes him ideal for blunting charges from scary aggressors such as Zhonjya and Rakkir. In a pinch he can become a pseudo aggressor with backstab and he also has a decent magic attack. Choosing the correct magic item can dictate the role Piper plays. The Vorpal Blade or Ring of Power can increase his aggressive output or one of the defensive items like Boots of Agility can improve his role as a defender.
The basic game plan is usually to advance Marcus and Piper to key defensive positions, around Shrines and Soul pits. Have Rakkir advance to a threatening position and have Zaron and Allandir in the second wave, Zaron ready to capture Souls and Allandir finding a place where he covers as much of the field as possible.
Will write up my second Warband shortly!