Shared from the Comm Guild blog here: http://www.thecommguild.com/roller/thecommguild/entry/tactics-broken-forsaken-chieftains
With the release of our second Broken Chieftain model, we've also updated its unit card in our online Force Builder rules here
, finally unveiling the full suite of equipment options that Broken Chieftains have available to them. This article will look to update your Chieftain knowledge, focusing on their two new upgrade options: Customized Weapons and Enhanced Cybernetics.
Though Broken Weaponsmiths work tirelessly to keep the weapons of their fighting force repaired and functioning properly, they are also constantly prodded by their Chieftain to find new avenues for how Broken weaponry can be made ever more deadly. In other words, Weaponsmiths, and Broken society in general, are obsessed with making their guns as powerful as possible, regardless of how dangerous this makes them to the wielder. While Broken weapons can never match the accuracy or reliability of the more sophisticated enemy factions they face, the Broken instead rely on a near endless supply of desperate bodies clamoring to get their hands on a customized weapon, even when it is prone to lethal malfunctions.
Anytime Broken forces manage to steal, capture or purchase weapons off the black market, a portion of these are tithed to their Chieftain, who turns them over to their Weaponsmith in the name of 'weapons development'. The disassembling, tinkering, and soldering in a Weaponsmith's shop often continues days at a time. No method used to improve a weapon is off the table: overcharged powerpacks, larger caliber ammunition, oversized magazines, fusing multiple weapons together, etc. If it can be dreamed of, a Weaponsmith has attempted it. The more powerful the conversion, the more rare and coveted the weapon is amongst the Broken, and the more likely it will find its way into the hands of a high-ranking individual like a Chieftain, who views it both as a potent weapon and also as a way of reinforcing their status over those they command.
Rules-wise, customized weapons are an upgrade for a Chieftain that cost 2 points, and gives them the following benefits:
All weapons this model is equipped with permanently gain +1 PEN, +1 DAM and the Unstable ability (if they don’t already have it). Grenades & CQ Explosives are excluded.
As this upgrade affects any weapon a Chieftain takes (excluding grenades & CQ Explosives, of course), it gives you tremendous versatility towards deciding how you want to improve your Chieftain's shooting. For example, with weapons that provide a lot of shots but are only DAM 1, like a Slug Rifle or Chem Pistol, the Customized Weapon upgrade suddenly turns them into DAM 2 weapons. This means that every successful penetration is going to kill a standard MAS 2 infantry model outright, making these weapons now capable of mowing down enemy rank and file models. On the other hand, weapons that are already DAM 2, like a Beam Pistol or Beam Blastgun, now become DAM 3, allowing the Chieftain to become a big game hunter and seriously wound large models like Hunter Warmechs or Mature Angels. This upgrade also benefits any melee weapons the Chieftain may take, such as a Trophy Melee Weapon, Poisoned Blade and even the melee profile of the Beam Blastgun, turning the Chieftain into a formidable foe at close quarters.
Of course, the negative aspect of using customized weapons is that the weapon also gains the Unstable ability, which means that any '1's the Chieftain rolls to hit end up putting suppression tokens onto his unit equal to the DAM of the attack. While this can certainly be annoying when it happens, it is generally a small price to pay to seriously upgrade the offensive capabilities of your Chieftain.
While many Broken soldiers eventually have some part of their anatomy replaced with cyerbnetics (usually due to injuries they've suffered on the battlefield), some Chieftains choose to go a step beyond and command their Weaponsmith to give them extensive cybernetic limb and/or organ replacements as a means to improve their strength and durability. This is represented by the Extensive Cybernetics upgrade, which cost 2 points:
This model permanently improves its MAS characteristic by +1.
Boosting a model's MAS by +1 provides both defensive and offensive benefits. The most obvious improvement is that a MAS 3 model requires doesn't suffer an injury until at least 3 points of damage are allocated to it. For example, when a Chieftain leads a Broken Rabble squad, whenever there are only two DAM 1 penetrations remaining to be allocated (a frequent occurrence), you can now elect to put them onto the MAS 3 Chieftain, which means instead of losing a Rabble model, the unit will suffer no permanent damage! In other words, having a MAS 3 Chieftain not only means that model is more durable, but any unit the Chieftain joins effectively becomes more durable as well.
On the offensive side, a model's MAS characteristic is utilized in close quarters fighting with a melee weapon, both to determine how many shots the melee weapon makes, but also to figure out the PEN characteristic of that weapon. A MAS 3 Chieftain gets to make 5 attacks with a melee weapon (instead of the 4 it makes when it is MAS 2) and all those attacks are made with +1 PEN. For example, a Chieftain with Extensive Cybernetics and a Trophy Melee Weapon gets to attack 5 times in close quarters fighting, with each of those shots being a quite powerful PEN 5 and DAM 2. Even crazier, if the model also has taken the Customized Weapons upgrade, they combo together and those five shots are instead PEN 6 & DAM 3! That's enough potential damage to make any foe quake at the thought of facing a Chieftain in CQ fighting.
With these new upgrade options available, a Chieftain is easily the most customizable command model currently in the game. You can go with a super-cheap 7 point Chieftain that just has a couple of pistols, which allows you to fit more Broken units into your force, or alternatively you can take every upgrade and have a 13 point beast that has all kinds of tactical capabilities...the choice is ultimately yours!
Ready to try out your own cybernetic Chieftain? You can pick up the new resin Chieftain models along with the rest of the Maelstrom's Edge model range, from the webstore here
If you have any rules queries, tactics suggestions, or modeling progress to share, you can join in on the Comm Guild Facebook Group page here