One week in to Blasted Heath, and it’s time for some Blasted Heath model reviews. I’ve gotten some play time with the new league models and I have to say they’re just like last season’s… that is to say pretty awesome for ‘limited time only’ offers.
And this season’s Trollblood model is no exception. Noral Stonemapper is the character krielstone bearer as referred to in the Blasted Heath fluff, and I have to say, for a supposed dimwitted Lenny-type character he’s surprisingly powerful.
Let’s first look at what he’s gained and lost. He’s lost Fury Vault, but he’s gained consume fury AND stone spray in return. At first I was worried that he’d be more vulnerable, but this version still keeps self-sacrifice, which still means that krielstone scribe can still sac themselves to keep your important alive. Bear the 3″ self-sac range in mind though, because if he dies (since he’s a character) your KSB unit suddenly loses everything that made them important.
Now, what does this mean? Firstly, he’s limited to the 5 fury he can consume rather than the 7 you could have previously maxed out at. However, this upper limit almost never happens in the fury-starved world of 5 or 6 fury troll warlocks, so no biggie. However, consume fury allows your KSB to just DIP into a beast’s fury directly without having to go through a warlock! Now this is HUGE. Usually a Troll player’s first turn would be to hold off on casting spells because he’d need to dump as much fury as possible into the Krielstone. Noral totally removes that need, meaning that the Troll player has 1 extra turn of casting buffs and animi and what have you.
Not only that, the fact that he takes fury directly from a beast means trolls can run a LOT hotter. On average that’s two additional forces if you want to play safe, or 5 full fury if Noral started off empty. That’s one crazy maxed out diretroll. Which probably translates to a lot of pain for your opponent.
Because he needs to consume from a beast directly, that implies that you’ll be placing Noral’s unit relatively forward (CMD 9, so likely 9″ away from the frontline at most), as compared to the backline unit that the original flavour KSB was. However, Noral has the option of being an offensive attack, with stone sprays that you can friggin boost with. People who have seen the Journeyman know the adage that ‘boosted POW12’s kill casters’, so I don’t have to tell you that boosted POW12 Sprays can do that, but WORSE.
The only thing about Noral is that he does tend to slow your army down a LITTLE bit. You’ll generally be moving and consuming/spraying, so that means that your army (if in brick form) will only be moving 5 inches a turn, but that’s a small price to pay for being able to run your beasts a LOT hotter, and besides… you’re not exactly tethered to the stone armour aura, you beasts can always rocket out if they need to. 😉
Final opinion: slightly less mobility for a LOT MORE offensive potential, Noral Stonemapper is one model I really really wish we had in our arsenal. Consume fury on a troll model would revolutionize the ‘we can’t play beast heavy’ mentality that most players have, and would be something that I welcome.
Thanks for reading this article, and do drop us a comment on how you feel Noral is treating you this season. Also, be sure to tune in next week, where I’ll be talking about Khador’s badlands kodiak. If you’re interested in some of the other factions, Lost hemisphere also has some wonderful writeups about some of the models from Skorne, Circle, Menoth and Cygnar right now, and I’m sure they’ll have more!