A quick recap of the scale I’m using for this series:
1 – “You are handicapping yourself by playing this model. It is criminally overpriced and/or underpowered.”
2– 3 – “There are very few situations in which this model is the correct choice. It is substantially outperformed by another piece or does a job that is irrelevant”
4 – 5 – “Potentially valuable in niche situations. The model may not be worth it’s points or worth taking, except when a list does something specific to emphasis its strengths or eliminate its weaknesses”
6 – 7 – “A useful piece that will find play in a variety of places. Probably good value for its points or fills a useful role that some lists will value.”
8 – 9 – “One of the core pieces of the faction. This piece will find a place in many lists and brings something crucial to the faction”
10 – “An auto-include. This piece is at the pinnacle of the faction and requires an extremely good reason to consider not including it”
Let’s get on with having a look at the MK3 light Warjacks:
Blessing of Vengeance
Blessing is largely unchanged, other than picking up a couple of buffs and a small points reduction.
I’ll preface this section by saying most of my discussion will relate to his usefulness with Severius – I can’t think of too many other casters who would want him, but that certainly doesn’t mean he’s irrelevant.
His affinity got an interesting little bump – it now also adds +2 to an attack roll of Severius’ choice when channelling through him. This makes Severius effectively focus 10/11 on that cast, and is pretty nice just as a focus efficiency tool.
The new and improved Vision, as well as Severius2’s bond, work excellently on Blessing. These abilities, combined with Blessings Repulsor Shield make it pretty difficult to put many meaningful attacks on him. To add insult to injury, he can defensive strike before he pushes them away and cancels the damage roll from their charge.
He also randomly picked up shield guard. On an Arc Node, this isn’t incredible, but I can see situations where it has value.
As I said earlier, he’ll likely only get taken with Severius – but he’ll get taken with him almost every time. Luckily for Blessing, both incarnations of Severius are excellent and will get played.
Value Rating: 6
The Dervish is now the cheapest jack in Menoth, and my initial impressions are that he’s probably a point cheaper than he ought to be. Let’s review what you get for 7 points. He’s speed 5, with 1 inch reach and 2 POW 13 swords (read 15 when it matters), combo striking up to 17/19. The most interesting thing on his card, though, is Side Step in combination with Parry. This ability alone gives the Dervish the opportunity to get to interesting places. He’s also randomly MAT 7, which is better than most of the Heavies.
The Dervish is a competent melee light, and he’s not going to set the world alight by himself (although getting a damage/speed buff on him makes him do more work than he probably has any right to). However, his super-cheap price raises some interesting possibilities, and I’m focusing in on one Warcaster in particular to really abuse the Dervish: Amon ad Raza.
Now, spamming light with Synergy casters isn’t a new thing – people tried it with Amon in MK2 and, more successfully, with Vyros2. Two things changed for Amon – he now has a super cheap, spammable light that can trade extremely well with a +3 Synergy chain. Most crucially, though, the existence of Power Up and the new focus transfers make Amon really come alive (literally, in the case of not being dead). I could potentially see him pop up in a few other places; Durst with Wall of Steel/Decel, any Ignite/Boundless Charge casters, etc.
I think the Dervish will largely find its home with Amon, though. However, this should prove a powerful and popular home, so he should get a good amount of play in MK3.
Value Rating: 7
The Devout received a couple of changes in the transition, which are quite hard to read in terms of their effect.
Firstly, he dropped half a point (5 to 9) and gained a point of MAT, as well as a bit of POW on his shield. He still has Shield Guard, which got buffed up to 3 inches and he still defensive strikes (which is a bit better at MAT 7).
His major change is to Spell Barrier – he no longer has to spend a focus and now simply has to be B2B with his warcaster to give the spell immunity. In some ways, this is a buff – it requires less moving parts, less awkward order of activations, and less focus input. On the other hand, it also has more counterplay – if the enemy can break B2B contact between the two (by TK’ing the jack or via a slam/throw), the spell immunity is lost.
As ever, he’s still a pretty potent little jack, offering Shield Guard and situational spell immunity at a relatively cheap price. With the choir and MAT 7, he can even get a little work done in the late game. I think he’ll find some play with casters who don’t like to be moved around, shot or debuffed – Reznik2 or Amon ad Raza, for example, should benefit from his specific tool box.
Value Rating: 7
This was the new light released in Vengeance, and it’s as puzzling now as it was then. It’s now 8 points, with two 1 inch chain weapons, overtake and Flame Trail (setting things B2B with you on fire is a bit lame in practice).
My main question about this jack is this – why would I take one over a Dervish? Let’s compare. The Dervish is a point cheaper, base threat range and POW is the same. The Purifier trades out Side Step, Parry and Combo Strike for Overtake and Chain Weapon and a flavour ability. In my opinion, the Dervishes’ abilities are better in almost every situation AND he’s a point cheaper.
Got points for a combat light? Take a Dervish and a Mechanic instead.
Value Rating: 3
Remember those days when you had to spend 2 focus to get all three rockets out of a redeemer? And it was still a great jack? Well, those days are gone. He is now base ROF 3 AND gets a free focus to randomly boost with. He also dropped half a point in the transition.
The changes to Battle impacted him some – he can now only aim to RAT 3, unless you have another hit buff or have already applied Flare to a target (which is entirely doable). But, in a world where we’re likely going to see more heavies, hitting might be a bit easier.
His top end output involves landing 3 boosted POW 14s on something, for a 2 focus investment. He’s also as competent as ever at killing troops and solos with boostable blast.
For the small investment, he feels like an excellent choice.
Value Rating: 8
This little guy didn’t change at all – points, weapons and abilities all remained static.
With his 8 inch spray, the change to Battle probably hurts him more than any of the other lights. RAT 7 fire sprays are deadly. RAT 5 is less deadly. He does get the free focus from power up, which is handy for boosting a key roll with no further input, but his overall efficacy feels reduced.
He’s still cheap, though, and his spray is still a good pow with battle and I can see him getting niche play in some lists.
Value Rating: 5
I feel a little sorry for the humble Revenger. The number of casters that want an arc node in Menoth enough to spend 10 points on it is small enough. But, to add insult to injury, the one that does (Severius) has his own character who, for 3 points extra, absolutely outclasses the Revenger.
For other casters who might enjoy a node (Kreoss 3, etc), the Guardian getting a big bump up in effectiveness for his points further inhibits the Revenger’s value. 5 Extra points for a MAT 7 hard hitting heavy arc node who charges at MAT 9 feels like a pretty easy decision for the most part.
He’s not inherently a bad jack – he hits alright, brings a node, has powerful charge and is actually quite survivable with his shield and repulsor shield. I just don’t see him being taken, sadly.
Value Rating: 2
One of the most interesting utility jacks of MK3. He mostly stayed the same, keeping girded and his two shields and dropping down slightly in points. So, he sits at a respectable ARM 21. He hits like a flannel, though, so don’t expect too much out of him, even with Battle.
His major change is the addition of Road Block to his card. Now, he gives mobile access to cover (he functions like an obstacle) on a jack that is pretty damn hard to kill.
I think, initially at least, that he’s going to get overplayed a bit. Cover for squishy Menoth casters sounds amazing. But Cover isn’t going to save Severius from death – you still need appropriate distance and positioning to do that. He’s not really needed with casters with great stats, like Kreoss 3, who are very mobile and survivable.
So, where does he shine? The answer is casters (like Amon ad Raza, The High Reclaimer/Testament, etc) who need to get up the field, have a reasonable stat block and need to be that bit safer. If they can get a bit of work out of him (Amon can, believe it or not), all the better.
So, I think he’ll see plenty of play and brings something really unique. I’m not sure how valuable it is across the board, but it feels great in some situations.
Value Rating: 6