Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

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Brightblade
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Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Brightblade » Sun May 20, 2018 7:51 pm

Was playing Darklands today, my new Atalantian army vs a Norse army, 1.5k Gold..

A unit of Burning Ones, 50mm Bases advancing on a 10 unit strong of 30mm Bowman..

Bowman, Volley Shooting for 2 game turns and then standard shots up close barely dented the 50mm Atalantians as each time they took the Parry Modifer on avoidance.

The Parry rule being that as long as the unit is the same strength or greater than the attacker the Parry rule can be applied..

Doesn't this kind of negate the Infantry, as each time they combat a unit with the Parry rule in their profile, either in Hand to Hand, Shooting, or Invoking the other unit is always going to get off lightly?

In the same game, the 30mm Norse Wizard shot lightening Bolts at the Burning Ones, that using the Parry rule with their shields, again they got off without a scratch, surely a Lightening Bolt hitting a Metal shield shouldn't give an extra Parry advantage, if anything it should be the reverse..

So, my question, should the Parry rule be amended to allow smaller strength attacking units to have an advantage, otherwise surely it's not worth having them on the board?
Devlin Brightblade, Lord of Saxon Hammerwich, Slayer of Trolls, Tamer of Manticores, Petter of Flint Flang the Kill Thing from the Infernal Pits..

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Icchan
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Icchan » Sun May 20, 2018 10:54 pm

Use axes or any weapons with the hook trait. Suddenly the parries are not so good anymore. Or try to tie the enemy unit in combat and charge in the back with another unit. Most units can't parry what they can't see.
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby DrNO172000 » Sun May 20, 2018 11:00 pm

Lighting Bolt ignores armour and Rob stated in a previous question I asked him that if you can't use the shield to add to armour you don't get the other benefits. Look under the thread "Under Strength and other questions". The implication here is that lighting bolt also would ignore even shield wall.

Honestly, though I'm not surprised that a 10 man unit of Holumann can't do more than dent a unit of Burning Ones, even without the parry modifier their Consitution is much higher than the combined might of the Holumann bows. That means they are avoiding on 4s even without the parry, which consequently is what the Toxokolossos would need, as 37 C=A vs 50-69 C+A is the same result on the chart. That's a full 60% of avoiding each die, and if firing on volley fire the Holumann will need a 6 to hit (unless you upgrade to drilled which makes it a 5 to hit), so you figure out of 30 dice on average 12 will hit. Then of those that hit on average, 5 will get through (well 4.8 really but you can't have fractions with dice). Of those 5 dice any 0,1,2,3 will be discarded, so that's a further 40% of wound dice that will be discarded on average. Leaving 3 dice that actually wound, which would be an average of around damage 19.5. So against even a Toxokollossos, they need 2 to 3 rounds of volley shooting to bring one down on average. Drilled end up with 26 damage on average.

Against the Burning Ones 12 should still hit, but 4 will get through on average (again really 3.6), 2 will be wound dice, causing on average 13 damage. Meaning on average they would need 3 to 4 volleys to bring one down, basically double! But needing almost double to take down a giant bronze statue with a shield vs one without I think is the point and seems appropriate. Drilled fair around the same here doing only slightly better.

Now this isn't using any of the other myriad modifiers, so keep that in mind.

But for the sake of argument let's look at shooting at a unit of Dromedus who are also on 50s and have a shield with the parry rule. We are still looking at about 12 dice getting through, out of 30. However, for the avoid roll the Dromedus needs 4s to avoid even with the parry. So that's 5 wound dice, Dromedus don't have Impenetrable though, don't even have hardy or tough for that matter, so only 10% of the dice will be discarded due to grazes. This causes an average of 22.5 damage so you will kill one Dromedus on average with 2 rounds of volley shooting. Drilled do 27 on average.

If it was say Dreaguth the damage goes up to about 27 average, so still looking at 2 volleys to bring one down. Drilled however have a solid shot of killing a single dreaguth per volley. Quite the difference!

And this is only dealing with averages, dice can go both ways. So a above average roll against say Dromedus will likely kill one in a single activation.

The main takeaways here imo are this,

1) every unit is going to match up differently against a different unit. I don't think we should expect that every unit can do well against every unit. Some units are just gonna be terrible against certain ones. Know your opponent and bring what's appropriate
2)10 man blocks aren't always enough, try taking bigger units. Example a 20 man unit of holumann bowman could kill a lot of 50mm monstrous infantry in a single activation.
3)Sometimes that drilled upgrade can make a huge difference, sometimes it won't (again know your opponent)
4)Kollosi are meant to feel and be highly survivable and should not be bothered by 10 holumann on average. Even in the case of say the Dromedus who still needs about two volleys to be brought down by a unit of 10 Holumann the percentage of constitution lost per volley is much higher on average. Those Bronze guys are just tough as hell.
5)Many musters don't even have above 30mm shooting units, so 30mm is sometimes all you got for shooting. You decide whether or not shooting is worth it or not.
6)Be careful of following into the trap of judging a rule off of one game, a single game really can not give a strong feel for a highly asymmetrical ruleset.

Of course this is me just doing math (which I may have messed up royally), and guessing at Rob's intent (which I could be completely wrong about as well), the main intent being that the Mesokollossos should shrug off that attack, and that shields should make shooting tough (lots of musters don't have access to shields in abundance by the way, Ysians come to mind).
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DrNO172000
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby DrNO172000 » Sun May 20, 2018 11:18 pm

None of that, by the way, takes into account the exploding 9s.
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Jonathon Chester » Mon May 21, 2018 11:00 am

Also the question you have to ask is why are you sending human sized infantry into the big stuff expecting to parry? If you take realism into account why should a stonking great demon like Krull suffer when parying a piddly human? His axe would just go straight through.
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Brightblade
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Brightblade » Mon May 21, 2018 11:18 am

Appreciate all your comments.
But doesn't this then make Darklands about whose got the biggest monsters on the table wins.. which again makes Infantry defunct, so why would anybody field them other than to fill a Mainstay spot in their Muster..

What is the purpose of 30mm infantry / 30mm Bowmen on the table other than to be chewing fodder for bigger beasties?
Devlin Brightblade, Lord of Saxon Hammerwich, Slayer of Trolls, Tamer of Manticores, Petter of Flint Flang the Kill Thing from the Infernal Pits..

As you slide down the Bannister of Life, may the Splinters be kind...
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Jonathon Chester » Mon May 21, 2018 12:03 pm

Shootingt? fighting other infantry? also shieldwall does provide a modifier regarless of size. Also 30mm infantry are (usually) higher skilled than larger stuff so are harder to hit. Another factor Rob always says is equivalent cost should beat equivalent cost. A monster would eventually be brought down by weight of numbers by the 30mm infantry.The Draigooch for example is almost 1200 gold. 109 base Rhyflewr would more than likely bring it down over the course of a game.
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DrNO172000
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby DrNO172000 » Mon May 21, 2018 1:10 pm

This is just my experience, but I've found units of 10 which is often the bare minimum, just don't cut it vs bigger beasties. But 15 to 20 I've seen bring them down sometimes easily. Especially if you charge them with so many guys you're forced to start moving into rear arcs.
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Brightblade
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Brightblade » Mon May 21, 2018 3:33 pm

I didn't think you could take a Rear Arc modifier if the Attacked Unit has seen you coming?

Even with say 20 infantry charging towards a big beastie who can see them coming, to get all 20 into the battle you would have to place them in the rear arc of the beastie, but surely you couldnt claim a modifier for those as the beastie has seen them coming
Devlin Brightblade, Lord of Saxon Hammerwich, Slayer of Trolls, Tamer of Manticores, Petter of Flint Flang the Kill Thing from the Infernal Pits..

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DrNO172000
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby DrNO172000 » Mon May 21, 2018 5:33 pm

Looking in the rule book I've not seen anything that says that. I might be missing it but the rules on page 161 right side under "Engage into Arcs..." states

Engaging warriors may only Engage Move into the enemy warrior's arc of sight the majority of their base lay within when the Engaging unit declared the Engagement action, called the engaged arc (the opposite arc to the engaged arc is called the unengaged arc). This ensures warriors do not use their engage to move to engage an enemy in his blind arc when they were face to face. "

Then under "...unless there is no other choice"

"However, if an Engaging unit has Engaged as many warriors into an Engaged unit's engaged arc as it can without breaking any other rule, and has enough Engage Move and warriors remaining to engage them into the Engaged unit's unengaged arc, it may do so. Effectively, fill up the engaged arc with as many Engaging warriors as possible, and then Engage into the unengaged arc!"

So per the engagement rules you have to move in such a way that you get as many guys into the engaged arc as possible, only then can you move guys into the unengaged arc. Also keep in mind which arc is the engaged arc depends on each separate warrior not the unit as a whole. If charging from the side of something you are bound to have some warriors have the sight arc as the engaged arc and some have the blind arc as the engaged arc.

The main rub is that you'd really need to be under move orders as Direct engagers (those under attack orders) have to move in a straight line and can only change direction before they move. So Direct engagers charging head-on would never really be able to get into a blind arc anyway. Indirect though certainly could.

Then on pg 200 under the Strike Modifiers chart, it says this

"Easy strike – Attacking an Attacked warrior in his blind arc, unless the Attacked warrior can make blind strikes or is blind sighted"

So unless there is some rule somewhere I missed (perfectly possible with this game) if a warrior is in a blind arc when he strikes it's an easy strike. Just warriors entitled to an easy strike would have to strike separately from those not.

Beyond that, the parry would also be a sightless parry.
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Brightblade
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Brightblade » Mon May 21, 2018 7:07 pm

Yeah, that all kinda makes sense..

Thinking of it from my perspective, If I had 5 blokes coming towards me to attack me, they wouldn't stop in front of me and take turns to hit me so I can see the hits coming, they would surround me, so yes I could possibly fight off the three in front of me as I could see what they were doing, but the ones behind me I wouldn't have a clue..

So, makes sense that a Blind Arc modifier would apply for the Units who have had to move into the rear arc because the Sighted Arc is already full and they have enough pace left to do so..
Devlin Brightblade, Lord of Saxon Hammerwich, Slayer of Trolls, Tamer of Manticores, Petter of Flint Flang the Kill Thing from the Infernal Pits..

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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Rob Lane » Tue May 22, 2018 1:46 pm

Do I need to answer anything here?

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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Brightblade » Tue May 22, 2018 2:28 pm

Rob, I would value your views on the best use of 30mm infantry units on the battlefield..
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby HughB » Tue May 22, 2018 3:05 pm

Lets have a look at what 30mm stuff can do that bigger stuff can't do then shall we?

Cheap activations. 30mm models are, by and large, cheaper than bigger stuff and so can be used to out activate your opponent. Handy for outflanking/out outmaneuvering etc etc.

Cheap missile units. 30mm models aren't always the only units with missile weapons but they are, again, cheaper options than larger models with missile weapons. This allows you to get more 'arrows in the air' basically. Handy for chipping wounds of big monsters to make them more manageable. Handy for keeping lone characters honest and can be used to shock other units thereby forcing fortitude tests on them.

High skill and/or veteran/elite units. The truly high skill stuff is usually only on 30mm bases. Thus if you're on a 30mm base and you've got high skill you've got a chance to get a pretty attack off on bigger units if you can engineer a situation where you can charge them rather than letting them charge you (not outwith the realms of possibility when you consider the above point about out activating). So I'm looking at things like gabrax or ax drunes or warriors of baalor among others with decent to high skill and with M+W around 50 which is high enough to give stuff on 40/50 or even 60mm bases a hard time.

Veteran units can also be used as bunkers or road blocks. If they're veteran/elite then they take any fortitude checks on their unmodified fortitude which can be engineered to be very high with the addition of a noble. This means that you can set up situations where the unit has to be wiped out to a man to get rid of them.

Yes bigger stuff hits harder and/or can soak more damage but generally bigger units aren't as skilled and they cost more. So you can get more of the 30mm stuff so they can out manouever the big lads.

Taking your 50mm mesokollosus unit as an example - in shieldwall they're pretty resistant to bow fire but for the equivalent cost you could get a few units of 30mm units with ranged/melee weapons to shoot them up a bit then take them in the flank/rear where the shield wall doesn't take effect.
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Rob Lane » Wed May 23, 2018 9:37 am

Brightblade wrote:Rob, I would value your views on the best use of 30mm infantry units on the battlefield..


What Hugh said to be honest; they're essential, in my view, to any all-round balanced host. They're cheap, often highly skilled compared to monstrous stuff and under-rated.

The trick with infantry is to apply them at the correct moment and in the right place. Don't put 10x Holumenn against 5x Mesokolossi - they'll get murdered. Use the 10x Holumenn to hunt down smaller stuff or join in bigger fights to tip the balance. If you have 20x Holumenn, use them as an anvil to engage the Mesokolossi (who won't be able to kill them all) and then apply something else to be the hammer.

Someone didn't believe me about this once and I made him take 500 gold of Gairlom v 500 gold of Srónax. We fought a few times and the Gairlom won more often than not (usually dependent upon who charged). They out-activated the Srónax, surrounded them and killed them. Yes it's anecdotal but trust me, I wouldn't allow it if the gold costs didn't work out against each other. Try it yourself. Take 500 gold of Holumenn against 500 gold of Mesokolossi in a stand up fight.

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Brightblade
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Brightblade » Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:22 pm

BUMP...

Just adding to this thread with my experience I am gaining through playing the game..

In my latest game against a Ysian force, I had two units of 7 Werwulfs on 40mm bases who Indirect Enagaged a Hammer Druc on a 100mm base...

Firstly the Werwulfs Indirect Engaged being Wild and on Move Orders to counter the Frenzied Feral Hammer Druc who if they had charged would have Counter Charged..

Both Units engaged the Hammer Druc and surrounded it, both in Sight and Blind Arc...

It took two Battle Hours, but the Werwulfs took down the Hammer Druc, whilst losing less than 7 werwulfs mainly due to the Stomping and Gleeful Stomping of the Druc...

So smaller units in numbers can take down larger beasties, it just taked time...

In the same game, a unit of 40mm Freawulfs took down an Abhorrant 100mm base again over two Battle Hours, and only lost one wuld from it's unit, but I think that was more about lucky Dice rolls rather than the Unit sizes vs Strength...
Devlin Brightblade, Lord of Saxon Hammerwich, Slayer of Trolls, Tamer of Manticores, Petter of Flint Flang the Kill Thing from the Infernal Pits..

As you slide down the Bannister of Life, may the Splinters be kind...
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Re: Parry Modifier renders 30mm Infantry Redundant

Postby Rob Lane » Mon Aug 13, 2018 2:01 pm

Glad to hear it!

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Rob

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