This is the WIP thread for Ariadna's N3 updated tactica. Please refrain from posting in here until completion. I'll be looking for input from the wider community to iron out personal prejudices and inaccuracies once done lol! Overview: Ariadna have a huge wealth of excellent units and each of their component nation states make excellent contributions to a "vanilla" force. Obviously many choices simply work better in their host sectoral, but i'm pretty confident when I state that there are currently few-to-zero terrible choices thanks to tweaks in the unit profiles and costings during the move to N3. We don't have access to many of the neato toys that the other races sport; we have no ODD, TO camo, AD3, repeaters for hackers or servant bots for our specialists, no TAGs and our one measly REM isn't exactly the envy of the human sphere either. So what do we have? Plenty of hardy troops, plentiful camo, abundant smoke + mines, werewolves(!!), almost total immunity to hacking, an excellent bevvy of skirmishers and some excellent close combatants. None of our stuff is particularly expensive for what you get either and its very difficult to not end up with 15-16 orders on your list without even trying to spam models. That said, Ariadna have some excellent elite options, so if a 10 man elite squad is your thing, it can def be done! Things to look out for: Races with ready access to MSV2-3 or smoke can really ruin ariadna's day. Much of our power comes from utilising our easy access to camo skills and these MSV units act as a counter to that. Given our lack of MSV2, smoke-heavy forces exploit another one of our weaknesses and will require some thought. ITS play: Ariadna are a very strong option for ITS play given their access to plentiful cheap infiltrating specialists which saves you a few MOV-MOV orders and gives plenty of redundancy if you lose one or two to AROs. Secondary objectives can be a little harder for us; we have no "remote presence" or Cubed profiles to benefit from command token re-rolls and our few hacker choices aren't fantastically useful, given the lack of benefits they bring the army as a whole. That said, we can achieve all of the secondaries, it just requires a little more luck and a little more planning than other races need. Light Infantry: This section brings a fantastic mix of choices to the Ariadans, with each of the constituent nation states contributing at least a couple of useful units. We have super cheap "cheerleaders" right through to elite long range killers and you're going to usually have at least one or two from this section in any list you deploy. 112 One of the generic medical choices for the faction, this guy is as cheap as most other race's line trooper paramedics and therefore makes a great budget-level specialist for ITS games and for achieving the "experimental drug" secondary as well as "HVT: Innoculation". His WIP13 is passable, but without re-rolls from command tokens (no cubes in Ariadna), he can often be an angel of mercy, putting his patients out of their misery rather than returning them to full health! He is considerably under-armed for combat too, sporting only a light shotgun and a fire axe, but courage is a welcome perk as is his PHYS12 for dodging. 12 points is a fair asking price imho and he works well laying prone behind a pesky sniper on a rooftop or as a cheap specialist to grab nearby objectives, especially in ITS missions where doctors receive a +3 to WIP rolls Dozers The generic engineer choice for ariadna; he's available in the current sectorals and is the only way of accessing our sole REM. Boasting a pip of ARM, d-charges and a rifle over his 112 cousin, he's a fairly capable line-trooper as well as a specialist and can complete "test-run", "HVT: retro-engineering" and "sabotage" secondary objectives. If you're not taking the Traktor Mul REM, then the Akrylat Kanone profile is the winner, gaining a 32" Adhesive weapon (though you do trade off the d-charges). 14pts is a very fair price for a package as good as this, though you may find that with a lack of REMS and TAGs, his actual use as an engineer might be limited. Note; the traktor mul device is a likely candidate for an update to "comms equipment" with further FAQs so be careful with advancing dozers into repeater zones. Kazak Doctor Similar in scope to his 112 relative, he trades a pip of PH and V:Courage for a rifle and a pip of ARM, making him a more capable line trooper than the 112. Still as good a doctor, but reliably more killy at up to 16" he's a bit more flexible in application. 13pts is the asking price and its pretty fair. Solid choice for ITS games as a secondary specialist or recovering downed spetsnazs from a prone rooftop position. They can also fire medikits at downed troopers and achieve secondaries, as well as getting bonuses on WIP rolls on missions like "cold sleep" Highlander Caterans A super cheap and potent sniper, the cateran brings budget T2 ammo, mimetism and climbing plus in one tight package. If you can't make the extra 0.5SWC work for the T2 ammo, the basic sniper rifle now picks up shock under N3, making it more potent to 1W troopers and especially those pesky folk with dogged and NWI! He's mobile and deadly, though the low asking price is offest by the limited camouflage, so make sure you utilise its surprise attack as you'll only get to do it the once. 20-21pts + 0.5-1SWC is well spent here, though the T2 remains my pick, causing double wounds for any failed saves. Quote it is also worth noting that he is pictured on a 40mm base but remains S2. I'd advise building him on the 25mm base supplied for ease of use Caledonian Volunteer Corps These guys are very cheap, but their low cost is reflected in their low stats, especially their paltry BS of 10. They do make excellent guards however (especially the chain rifle variant), and parking them somewhere in your deployment zone on suppression fire or with a chain rifle can deter aerial deployment strikes whilst contributing very cheap orders to your combat groups. Alternatively, the limited camo/inferior infil options are cheap gambles for the more aggressively minded player, potentially getting "sabotage" objective completed on T1. The penalty for failure is low now, though they do cost a few extra points over the base profiles. My picks: Chain rifle/light shotgun 6pts -Represents the cheapest regular order with a gun in ariadna. great for defending your DZ with its +6 shotgun band or template weapon depending on your opponent. Paramedic rifle 10pts - Brings a rifle, a cheap order and a specialist profile to the party. even better for ITS games like supplies where medics get a +3 bonus on objectives, plus can have a stab at "Experimental drug" or "Inoculation" if you're feeling lucky. Aside from these, the other profiles bring much more to a scots sectoral, low BS hindering the LGL and HMG profiles. They're not expensive though so if you like the models, they occasionally come in handy, even if there are better choices for their limited AVA of 2. Line Kazaks AVA: Total and generally uprated stats really help reflect these guy's status as regulars over the militias of the French and Scottish contingents. They bring better specialist profiles and a bevvy of heavy weapons, though without link team bonuses or FO support, many of these choices will work better in their upcoming Kazakh sectoral, though in a vanilla force, they contribute cheap specialists and capable cheerleader troopers. My Picks: Rifle 9pts- cheerleader and decoy LT. Great for bulking out combat groups and guarding a DZ LT Rifle 9pts- an easily hidden 0SWC LT. Forward observer Rifle 10pts- cheap and cheerful specialist, useful with flash pulse as an ARO and for achieving "telemetry" and "designation" secondaries. Aside from these, the average BS and ARM attributes means that the special weapons don't really shine on this platform, though the AP HMG is certainly worth considering over the low burst sniper and missile launchers. Troupes Metropolitaines (Metros) These guys are the French equivalent of the Caledonian volunteers and also feature a low statline, low AVA and almost identical profile options (save for a lack of a chain rifle) The advice above for the volunteers applies here, stick to the cheapest profiles for cheap regular orders or the paramedic for ITS missions that reward it. The camo/infil profiles are there for those that gamble, but these guys are primarily here to bulk out a combat group and guard a DZ. Elite Light Infantry: Things start getting interesting here, with the Russians and French contributing some pretty deadly and capable troopers. Loup Garou Packing an extra pip of BS, ARM and an X-visor over their standard LI compadres, They straddle the line between LI and MI but retain the much stronger 4-4MOV at the cost of the greater MI armour stat of 3. For me, its a price more than worth paying and these guys bring some deadly and useful weaponry to the table at a fair asking price, though an AVA of 2 means you need to choose which you need most. My picks: Viral rifle, flash grenades 21pts- Viral is all sorts of deadly and the x-visor helps hit out to 32" and beyond with reasonable odds. Boarding shotgun, ADHL 18pts- ADHL ammo is very useful in negating the rampage of big nasties and the X-visor helps mitigate its short useful range band somewhat. Its a cheap enough platform and fast enough to utilise its weaponry, though cheap enough that it won't ruin your game if you lose it to ARO. I'm really not a fan of the flash LGL, especially at the 1.5SWC asking price. Though the sniper isn't a terrible use of 0.5SWC and 21pts, I'd rather take the Zouave sapper for a similar price and greater defensive capabilities. Zouaves: Also boasting the uprated BS and ARM of the Loup Garou, they gain the mechanised deployment skill, heavy weapons, assault pistols and sapper profiles for similar prices. Under-loved due to similarly priced competing skirmishers with camouflage, they still bring a lot of utility to a vanilla force, though they do all cost SWC, even for a basic profile. My Picks: Sapper HMG 1.5SWC 30pts- Mech deploy where needed, get in foxhole, get on suppressive fire, profit. The model is a contender for "best infinity model" as well! Sapper Sniper 0.5SWC 25pts- Cheap, cheerful, covers a long firelane on a budget. Forward Observer Rifle, DEP, Assault pistol 0.5SWC 21pts- a veritable toolbox of useful kit; he packs a punch against heavies and can blow up doors/walls/lifeblood crates with the DEP, has flash pulse for long range ARO and rolls from 0-8" and 8-16" very well with his assault pistol and rifle. Often overlooked for chasseurs and foxtrots, he's just as useful, just in a different way. The others all have their uses, but IMHO, the above three represent the best utility/value. 1er Regiment: Para-Commando The Belgian drop troops sport mimetism and parachutist special rules, making them an efficient choice for appearing well up the table and able to win gunfights. WIP14 and BS12 combine to make these guys a very viable choice of gunfighter or specialist! You do need to plan your attack before you finish deployment however, so if deploying first, make sure you hold him back in reserve so as not to waste him. My picks: Forward observer, rifle 21pts- WIP14 specialist that can win FTF rolls? no-brainer. Just needs a new sculpt imho. HMG 1SWC 31pts- Able to outflank and strike from vulnerable angles, he's taken a hit from the new ranges. Be aware of where your -3 and +0 bands are and you shouldn't go too wrong with him. Boarding shotgun 22pts- Able to outflank and dominate within 8" with that tasty +6 band on the shotgun, this platform allows you to get into the action without having to footslog through long range AROs where he would otherwise die. I'm not a huge fan of the LGL or sniper profiles, given that you can now dodge speculative fire and that sniper rifle will tend to be out of its good ranges if AD is used. Spetsnaz These elite Russian killers are a step up in cost over their Belgian cousins but mark a step up in skills and training. Vastly better in CC thanks to MA L2 and CC20, plus benefiting from the Marksmanship L2 skill and either ambush camo or AD:parachutist +CH:mimetism; they make capable killers at range or in close quarters. Ignoring cover modifiers and gaining shock ammo make all profiles deadly and they're all excellent choices depending on what you need. You really cannot go wrong with either of the ambush camo or aerial deployment options. Each has a niche and each will perform well within it. Highly recommended to take at least 1 if not the full allocation of 2. The HMG profile is approaching broken levels of awesome. High damage, high accuracy, long range and suprise attacks from camo are a magnificent mix of skills and the resilience in CC deters would-be assasins like ninja, oniwaban and speculo. 6th Airborne rangers An entry into the AD market from the USAriadna sectoral, these boys sit squarely as a middle-option between paracommandos and spetsnaz parachutists. The bring better close combat skills than the paracommandos, given their Martial arts lvl2 (which also grants them stealth). The molotok is also better suited to the range bands that parachutists work in rather than the paracommando's HMG, though it does lack the pure hitting power. The comparison isn't all gravy though, the paracommandos still have mimetism and the FO profile (most common ITS usage) has a rifle over the airborne FO's SMG giving it greater range and resilience. They're also outclassed by the much-better spetsnaz parachutists who have both MAL2 and mimetism plus marksmanship L2 so make better backfield rambo units. The only real winner of a profile I see for the airborne is the molotok profile. It fills the heavy weapon niche better than the HMG para, thanks to the slightly more forgiving range bands, and simply fills a role that the spetsnaz cannot do. Otherwise, the paracommando FO is the better option for objectives missions and the spetsnaz has vastly more resilience and hitting power for backfield ops. Wardrivers An AVA 1 mercenary hacker, these guys are really the only option Vanilla Ariadna has for getting a full hacking device down on the table. Aside from accomplishing the "data scan" and equivalent HVT-based secondary, they don't really bring a huge amount of utility to an Ariadna force, given a lack of repeaters, hackable HI, relative lack of REMs and any combat jumpers that they would otherwise support in the other races. They do not break the bank though, and at 17pts 0.5swc/19pts 1swc depending on flavour of hacking device, its not hard to shoe one into a list if you need some digital warfare support. The full hacker can complete both hacking classified objectives, plus both forward observer classifieds and is therefore a good bet for the "highly classified" mission, but will likely need smoke support to get up the board as his shotgun just isn't well suited to run-n-gun advances. __________________________________________________________________ Medium Infantry A relatively sparse category for Ariadna given how plentiful their LI choices are, these guys still bring a couple of powerful options and tend to compete with the pseudo-HI choices we'll discuss later. Briscards A french mountain unit that straddled the LI/MI line like the Loup Garou but fell on the other side of the divider. They retain their 4-4MOV but don't benefit from ARM3 like standard MI making them fast and useful compared to standard MI and V:Courage is a nice perk. They are the only source of infantry MSV1 in the army outside of a named character and bring strong medium and long range weapons to the party as well as LT and FO profiles. The AVA of 2 is the only limiting factor however, as they're pretty reasonably priced for their abilities. they make for premier Aleph hunters, partially countering their ODD and bringing fire templates or shock ammo (sniper rifle) to deal with ODD and NWI, both their strongest forte. My picks: Heavy Rocket Launcher, Assault Pistol 1.5SWC 23pts- A great long range weapon that can deal FIRE damage to single targets at DAM15 or multiple clumped-up targets at DAM14, this guy is a bargain when you consider the MSV1 and BS12 platform it resides on. Lieutenant, Marksman Rifle, Assault Pistol 24pts- a 0SWC, well armed and well kitted LT that don't want to skulk their LT in the corner of a building. Forward observer, Marksman Rifle, Assault Pistol 25pts- A well armed and well kitted specialist. Sniper Rifle, 1SWC 25pts- The MSV and sniper rifle is a great combination for picking off camouflaged skirmishers like zeroes and nagas at range. Marauders Another entry from USAriadna, they're a jungle fighting briscard equivalent with american accents! They trade mountain terrain for jungle terrain, gain forward deployment L1, gain a pip of armour and get the full 4-2 MI MOV penalty for the pleasure. Their main selling point over the briscards though is their V:Dogged trait Many of the profiles exist for the USAriadna sectoral and work best there, but the MSV1 toting profiles make for decent briscard upgrades. If you were taking one for a sniper/HRL platform, you can consider these guys a flat upgrade. Able to start up to 4" outside of your deployment zone, they can easily plonk down into that tempting sniper spot or start off covering a firelane that you'd otherwise have to spend orders moving up-to. Given that they can also take a stray crit and still keep rolling thanks to dogged, they make for excellent additions to a vanilla force. Grunts These guys always seem out of place in this section as they're MI priced as LI. They do fill the usual MI criteria however, featuring ARM3 and 4-2MOV and feature a huge selection of skills and weapons. None of these will break the bank, but 4-2MOV means that standard LI are likely to be the more order efficient choice for ITS players at this price bracket. That said, a heavy flamethrower and shotgun for 10pts makes for a cracking deployment zone guard and great counter to ODD link teams like Moiras and Myrmidons. My picks: Heavy flamethrower, Light Shotgun 10pts- Can guard a huge area and gives a cheap, durable order Inferior infiltration, Heavy flamethrower, Light Shotgun 0.5SWC 11pts- Worth a gamble to get a huge FIRE template started up the board. The large template gives a massive disincentive for link teams and such to advance into its range. The other profiles are all ok, but I think they'll shine much more as a link team in the upcoming USAriadna sectoral as I think genuine LI work better in ITS for the cost for a vanilla force. Maverick 9th recon: The new USAriadna box brought in the age of the ariadna bikers, with these guys being first onto the shelves. WIth them came fast mounted MI, tooled up with MSV1 and smoke LGL on all profiles and not only that, but an FO specialist profile as well. The FO profile is the winner here for ITS players, a really fast specialist that brings its own smoke is absolute gold, though it will set you back 0.5swc per model. The molotok works well on this profile, with its speed and smoke, it can easily resposition onto a flank and cause havok in the backfield or hunt camo in the midfield with its msv1, though 2swc is a rather steep asking price. I'm not keen on the shotgun profile as it lacks any real reach, but the SMG/LRL is a good shout for when you don't need a specialist. Its 24" range, MSV1 and fire ammo combine nicely to make it a good camo hunter for clearing your midfield. These come highly recommended, especially for missions with exclusion zones where you don't have the luxury of having your AD/infiltrators doing all the hard work, Scots Guard: These guys are excellent in the scots sectoral, packing heavy weapons and camo into a sectoral that badly needs them. Unfortunately, in Vanilla, they're just outshone by Tankhunters in their role thanks to some slightly screwy pricing and really are only their if you prefer the newer scots models to the older tankhunter sculpts. Tankhunters: I'd say these guys are probably (definitely) undercosted and are about as near to an auto-take as you can get in Ariadna. Good armour, BS, weapons and equipment mean that every profile is worth taking depending on need. My personal picks however are the AP HMG and Autocannon. Both allow greatest utility out of camo and surprise attack rules and are the best counter to enemy TAGs and HI we've got. The Autocannon suffers from low burst, but is so deadly that when it does hit, not much usually survives!! It also allows the destruction of scenery which is useful in lifeblood and some of the ITS missions like The Armoury. D-charges also allow for completion of "Sabotage" secondary. AVA3, take at least 1 imho. If you like aggressive LTs, the Tankhunter LT makes for a damn good choice too. ______________________________________________________ Heavy Infantry Not really Ariandna's forte, the Scots and the Russians really contribute more than their French and American counterparts, where competition from MI choices makes them a tougher sell outside of their respective sectorals. A lack of "true" 2W profiles is an issue here, though shock immunity on most does help offset simple counters to our offerings. Though the Wulvers are technically a warband, they play more like HI and though Mirage 5 sit in HI, i'm switching to warband as they play more like that style for me. Caledonian Mormaers The nearest thing we have to "proper" HI, its impressive BS13, ARM5 and solid weapon options mean it can terrorise a firelane with either its x-visor+T2 rifle or AP HMG. The much improved dogged compensates for the lack of a 2nd wound, though activating it passes up on the option of healing it and returning it to play. Both profiles can be a lieutenant for no extra SWC making it a good choice for more aggressive users of LTs or for sticking in cover on suppressive fire and yelling "come at me brah!!" 32pts or 42pts + 2SWC make either choice a fairly reasonably priced purchase, though watch out for the 4-2MOV stat if you're planning a rampage. 3rd Highlander greys Trading off the extra teseum plates of their scottish brothers, they gain 4-4MOV and smoke grenades for the loss of 2 pips of ARM. They retain the shock immunity and dogged however, meaning they're a good choice for advancing and attacking with though watch out for the frenzy rule. many of the profiles are short ranged and as such work better in a link team in their sectoral. My pick of the bunch is the AP HMG at 34pts + 1.5SWC. Its smoke-dodge on a 16 helps keeps it safe in ARO and cross firelanes in the active, and it makes for a fearsome gunfighter with the DAM15 B4 AP ammo when deployed offensively. Veteran Kazaks A really strong option from the Russian quarter, these guys get closer to the HI standard of 2W thanks to the veteran L2 skill. It grants them SSL2 and NWI meaning they can take a hit and can never be surprised (ie shot in the back, attacked from camo or shot through smoke). Mimetism and ARM 4 go even further to make them an attractive choice, though at the upper ranges of 30-40pts, you'll notice the hit if you take the max AVA of 2. My Picks: AP HMG 47pts 2SWC- A fantastic offensive and defensive piece, he can either engage at long range range or sit with mimetism, in cover, on suppressive fire for -9's to hit and takes a bite out of counters to him like TO camo snipers with SSL2. Forward Observer, AP rifle, Light flamethrower 38pts- A tough, hardy specialist that can complete primary and secondary objectives is nothing to sniff at. The AP ammo helps the usually underwhelming rifle and flash pulse gives him a long-range ARO should he get caught out. Likewise, the LFT and SSL2 allow him to cope with TO threats like ninjas popping up out of the ether! And a recommendation from the community: On 5/27/2015 at 9:25 AM, BurningSky93 said: I'd add the Vet Kazak w/ T2 Rifle and X Visor to the honorable mentions if I were you. Compared to the Mormaer with the T2 Rifle and X Visor, he gets an extra 2 inches of movement, a LFT, a heavy pistol, +1 WIP, Veteran Lvl 2 and Mimetism at the cost of 6 points, 1 ARM and 1 PH. He's just as good at locking down territory in Supp. Fire and is a better assaulting unit thanks to his differences over the Mormaer. He's a great HI hunter and general stubborn tick that's tough to dig out. Minutemen I think these guys suffer a lot from internal competition from the more durable HI above and from the better equipped MI choices. For me I just think they fall on the MI/HI divider and don't have too much of a role in a vanilla army. That said, a link of these guys in USAriadna will probably be pretty formidable. I think the heavy weapon profiles are outshone by Tankhunters and Heavier HI and the light-armed profiles are outshone by the better equipped Briscards Moblots Suffering from the many of the same competition issues as their Minutemen brothers, these guys really shine in the Merovingian sectoral where their heavy weapon choices get buffed and their specialist profile allows the link to cap objectives. In vanilla, much of the appeal is gone; either the "proper" heavy infantry doing the job better for a modest price increase or medium infantry bringing better equipment for a similar price. The Moblots do bring the odd thing to the party however; Infiltration, AP rifle, Light shotgun, DEP 30pts An up-armoured, up gunned version of the Zuoave, he costs less SWC and comes with better BS and ARM. The AP rifle gives him a better hit against the big guys and the DEP is a fantastic bit of utility for destroying scenery and TAGs alike. The shotgun gives a great ARO CQC weapon and he infiltrates into his hunting range, saving on orders. Infiltration, Rifle, Light shotgun, E/Mauler 26pts One of the strengths of Ariadna is to play the minefield strategy, and this guy contributes nicely with the much-improved E/Mauler. He's well armoured and a great shot for a skirmisher too and is a nice off-beat choice, though the usual skirmisher faces are more flexible with their camo + minelayer profiles. 9th Grenadiers "Wulvers" Yes, yes, yes. I know! "they're a warband!!" I hear you scream. Yeah, no. They're an ARM3 2W HI choice in my eyes and fulfill everything you'd want in an Ariadnan HI. they pack fairly decent weapons for 0SWC, are fast and mobile, durable with ARM3 and 2W and kick the shit out of most things in close combat, falling within standard HI pricing. There are only 3 profiles to choose from but all sport a bevvy of useful skills; Climbing plus, Beserk, Natural born warrior and Kinematika 1. This on top of a statline that includes CC21, BS12, PH14 and W2 gives you an incredibly solid platform that only really suffers after it makes a kill, due to its frenzy status. My pick for vanilla is the MK12, given its durability and vertical mobility, it can make the most of its useful range band and lay down some DAM15 shooting. The T2 rifle is not to be sniffed at either, especially given it has the vertical mobility to get into a cracking overwatch spot an sit on suppressive fire and dare people to approach. The heavy shotgun is the hardest to recommend however, working much better in a link in the sectoral due to its short range. ___________________________________________________________ Skirmishers So this is where Ariadna really starts to shine. We can reliably chuck down more cheap camo specialists than any other race and this can give us a huge advantage in ITS missions where placing models into zones for scoring or capping objectives is important (and not limited by the rules of the mission). Chasseurs Premier objective grabbers, they're limited to AVA2 in vanilla which is a shame! SSL1, Camo and Infiltration set you up for great things before we start adding in light flamethrowers, ADHL and mines :-) My Picks: Forward observer, Rifle, Light Flamethrower, AP Mines 20pts- Fantastic loadout for a specialist, packing the utility of mines alongside offensive and defensive weaponry. You literally cannot go wrong here, being able to do primary and secondary objectives as well as designate targets for Uragan/Katyusha strikes Minelayer, Rifle, Light Flamethrower, AP Mines 20pts 0.5SWC- Where you don't need the FO profile above (or already have it covered with foxtrots), take this lady. She starts with a mine in play which is great for slowing down your opponent or denying him objectives Rifle, ADHL, D-Charges 19pts 0.5SWC- Another fantastic bit of utility kit. The ADHL isn't a common weapon and on this platform it really shines. Get her around the back of a TAG or other nasty thing and glue it to the ground before detonating a d-charge on its ass. Also great for getting into buildings with locked doors or blasting crates and scenery for ITS missions, or grabbing "sabotage" objective. The AP sniper seems a reasonable deal at first, but sniper rifles and infiltration don't play nice with each other, meaning you tend to waste one or the other in reality and the other profiles are eclipsed by the ones listed above. Foxtrot Rangers The American answer to the chasseurs focuses more on the budget end of the range, losing a lot of the fluffy stuff and giving the solid basics you need at the right price. Camo and infiltrate are still the key skills and mines on most profiles sweeten the deal. A pair of these makes for a solid workhorse ITS setup, freeing up chasseurs for minelaying duties if you're so inclined. My picks: Forward observer, rifle, AP mines 18pts- Cheap, cheerful and has everything you need to get the job done. Boarding shotgun, AP mines 19pts- Infiltrates into his useful +6 band and still brings the mines The heavy weapon profiles are nice to see, but the lgl isn't a great option due to being dodge-able and the sniper rifle doesn't play well with infiltration. Hardcases A new addition for N3, these hail from the USAriadna sectoral and functions as super cheap harassers. They are irregular, lightly armed, un-armoured and feature the stats you'd expect for the low price of entry, though the PH13 is a particular highlight. Given their irregular status, I'd advise caution on maxing out on these guys, especially in smaller secondary combat groups. They'll eat into your available order pool and commit you to using them when you might have a better use for that order slot. Both profiles are ok, being equipped with the new tactical bow as standard and a choice of rifle or shotgun alongside it. They pick up the ambush camouflage skill of their Spetsnaz rivals and put it to good use, but for me, the 14pt option with rifle is the winner for the overall utility up to 16"; the shotgun merely gives another option for the same 0-8" range band as the bow (and his pistol!). S.A.S The Scots also make a contribution to the skirmisher game and true to form, they're on the less subtle side of things. They trade off the camo shell and area denial game with mines and pick up close combat skills instead. CC19 with MA L2 and AP CCW means they're great for sneaking around the back of a pesky TO sniper and stabbing a few holes in it. Camo, Infiltration and Kinematika L1 round out the offering. My Picks: Forward observer, rifle 24pts- A capable specialist, surprise attack and camo mean he can reliably win gunfights and make use of CC to clear objectives of tough/techy opponents Chain rifle, grenades, assault pistol, 22pts- Great for clearing rooms and bullying light opposition, the mix of high burst and auto-hitting templates forces your opponent to make crappy choices. "Do I dodge the template and get out-bursted? or do I shoot at a large penalty (eg -9 for cover, camo, suprise attack) and tank a template weapon to the face?" Boarding shotgun 25pts- Can take the hurt to clumped up enemies or heavy armoured bad guys alike, being able to get into the best position to utilise his +6 band. You'll see the trend of not going for the snipers continuing here, we have dedicated snipers who do it better! Scouts Oft-unloved in N2 due to a steep price, these guys have become much more elite to match their cost in N3 and are an excellent investment. The Ojotnik also took a healthy boost in effectiveness, essentially becoming a pseudo-sniper rifle and getting loaded with AP ammo. Uprated BS and ARM combined with Marksmanship L1, D-charges and anti personnel mines round out the equipment list to make the scout a versatile and deadly premium skirmisher. My Pick: Forward observer, Ojotnik, AP mines, D-charges 30pts- A versatile and deadly specialist, he can reliably win gunfights, snipe at range, cap objectives and complete a host of secondaries. He's not cheap, but he's damn good. Lieutenant, Ojotnik, AP mines, D-charges 29pts- a slightly off-beat LT choice, costs no swc but brings a deadly weapon and the skills to use it well, all whilst retaining the defensive power of camo to keep himself safe. A good alternative for when your regular opponents start hunting your line kazaks with reckless abandon! The AP sniper is arguably a worse weapon than the ojotnik now, despite its higher damage code. The range bands don't play too well with an infiltrator but he does come with mines so can be easy to secure against attackers. Personal preference is for the Spetsnaz however, the upgrade cost is minimal and Marksman L2 is well worth it. ___________________________________________________________ Warbands Another faction-defining section for Ariadna; A wealth of cheap and dangerous profiles reside here but you'll need to learn to master impetuousness and smoke tactics to get the best out of them. 2nd Cameronians Hulking great werewolves, these guys are fast, deadly and cheap. Irregular and extreme impetuous make them difficult to control, but their speed and power means you'd want to utilise them every turn anyway. 6-4MOV, Super-jump, courage, ARM3, W2 and total immunity give you a fast and durable platform which mixes well with its smoke grenades, double chain rifles and grenades to be a bit of a terror to grouped up enemies and is able to cleave a hole in most troopers with CC21 and PH16!! 23 points is more than fair as a price, good fun to use too. well recommended! Dog-Warriors These guys are very similar in performance to the above Cameronians, except that they start in human form and transmute into their full werewolf mode hulk-style once they take damage. They are slightly more expensive to reflect the slight increase in durability but otherwise play similarly to Cameronians and share an AVA value with them, you can only take two of any mix, not two of each. The models are simply awesome (especially Freddy Mercury!) and that's reason enough to use them in my book :-) Antipode Assault Pack Made up of a handler and 3 antipodes, these were always a headache to use in N2 due to complex rule interactions. Thankfully N3 cleaned them up somewhat but they still act differently to the majority of units out in the game. Make sure you read and understand the rules prior to deployment, mistakes are often costly on the field of battle! In essence, both parts of the pack take up a combat group slot. The handler gives a regular order and the pack (which acts as one model) contributes an irregular order. They are separate entities for most situations and should be treated as such. The handler comes with a handy smoke LGL but is otherwise an unimpressive line trooper. As of the N3 FAQ the control device is comms equipment and can therefore be hacked; isolating the controller or blackout-ed and disabling it. This causes havok so be careful with repeaters and infiltrating hackers! The pack move as one model, have camouflage and sensor but are frenzied, so cannot re-camo once they've made a kill. Extreme speed (6-6MOV!!) and super-jump mean it is very hard for them to not reach combat, but they'll generally not survive the retribution, so use them as a furry, clawed cruise missile to take out something important. They're damn good, especially for flushing out camo heavy forces like shasvastii, nomads and ariadna with their sensor rule and coverage. 45th Galwegians Cheap as chips but deadly in a scrap, these guys are more or less braveheart distilled into infinity. They've got excellent CC stats, berserk and extreme impetuous status to boot. They're also irregular so factor that into your combat group planning if you're taking them. They do trade great CC potential for poor ranged potential however, so the chain rifle tends to be my pick of the bunch coming in at less than half the price of the shotgun profile. The rifle is tempting at times, but smoke can often get you across a firelane more safely than engaging in a face to face roll, especially when outranged and without the benefit of claiming cover!! These guys are also V:Dogged which gives them the extra legs to survive an ARO on their way into combat and is one of the best reasons to take them, though watch out for shock ammo. Irmandinhos A very interesting profile, these guys are the cheapest specialist available to Ariadna, thanks to their receipt of discounts for being both irregular and extremely impetuous. Engineering is not a widely available skill however, and a specialist that can provide their own smoke cover, has a "free" order and can often get a "free" gun from their booty L1 skill means they're damn enticing for ITS players. They come with the usual engineering kit like d-charges but are also more CC oriented, having CC20 and AP CCW if you need it. My pick is the chain rifle profile at 8pts. Roll the dice and hope for a nice "free" gun, their BS is low enough and their life expectancy short enough that you don't want to be paying a fortune for a shotgun they'll probably not use!! That said, they've often been my MVPs, especially in lifeblood. Being able to douse your objectives in smoke, cap them and then d-charge them all in one 8pt package is absolute gold and they come highly recommended. Devil Dogs A weird fusion of antipode pack and cameronian, these guys struggle for relevance in a vanilla force imho. They also tend to want to blunder into the midfield, where infiltrating hackers and repeater nets live. As a G:sync controller, this makes them very vulnerable to blackout and isolation, so def make sure you look out for that when planning your impetuous phase. The dog warrior is as hitty in CC as a normal cameronian but will often struggle to utilise the antipode it's paired with in CC due to their large base size and it trades off the extra chain rifle for a ballistic skill weapon its not really statted up to use well. Sensor is kinda nifty, but i'm not sure this is the best platform to run it on, as a standard antipode pack is cheaper, has camo and larger effective sensor radius. As an attacking piece, it brings little more to the party than a cameronian and the 7-16pts change you get depending on which profile you want. Out of the two, the shotgun is the better pick, having better damage and range bands, but at 39pts is very hard to recommend over either of the basic units and spending the change on something more useful. Desperados Fast, irregular and extremely impetuous, these guys are a much quicker and heavily up-gunned alternative to galwegians. They come stock standard with SSL2, Courage, smoke grenades and a smoke-loaded LGL mounted on the bike to keep them safe and four different weapon loadouts for damage. The increase in speed and hitting power over their infantry alternatives comes at the loss of dogged and CC skills and its worth noting that they have no real reach beyond 16" range given cover modifiers and such. the winners for me: Chain rifle, 2 assault pistols, smoke grenades, CCW 13pts -Smoking into attacking range and then hosing down multiple targets with split B5 or simply overwhelming a better B1 ARO with pure dice overload, this guy is cheap and brings a lot of threat. Given the loadout of chain rifle, you force the opponent to think carefully about his ARO choice. if he dodges, go with the assault pistols and use burst to overcome the FTF, if he shoots, smack multiple targets with the chain rifle and play the uneven-trade game. Cheap enough to not care and irreg/impetuous. the loss of a desperado for several enemy troops is a good trade as it doesn't hurt your regular order pool anyway. Boarding shotgun, smoke grenades, 2 heavy pistols, CCW 18pts Similar to the above, he lacks the ability to overwhelm with burst but the shotgun allows him to hunt bigger game with DAM14 AP slugs or hurt tightly packed link teams which will become more prevalent in HSN3. He loses the chain rifle, so is much easier to ARO against, so will tend to be a prime uneven-trade piece. Use speed to get round the backs and flanks of troops and fight dirty as he won't win straight up shooting matches. Mirage 5 "Yes, yes yes. They're not a warband, they're HI!!" I hear you say; Yeah, no. Mirage 5 are basically an excellent Moblot duct-taped to an excellent Cameronian and chucked out of the back of a dropship. Bringing both the out and out power of a Cameronian (with MA L2 for extra CC hitting power!!) coupled with a well armed and armoured crack-shot Moblot, they can really turn a game when they walk on the board edge and unleash hell. Old hats may be concerned that the changes to speculative fire and dodging template weapons have dampened their Rambo ability somewhat but their cost has dropped to reflect the changes. Buffs to CC plays well to Durocs strengths; gaining stealth to allow him to silently shank snipers and other pesky models with a minimum of fuss. Margot benefits from suppressive fire like a boss; being able to walk on to a great spot and dig in, covering an objective with extremely accurate fire. New players should take them on their merit, they are very deadly and can easily swing ITS missions like frontline and supremacy, not to mention annihilation! You need to plan for how order intensive rambo units are, especially AD units. Don't leave them in a small group or bring them on with only one or two orders of the turn left. Bring them on early (impetuous requires orders to hold back!) and make sure they make a dent as they'll be high target priority for your opponent. In terms of kit; Margot brings BS14, an AP rifle and an underslung LGL and is well able to harass and flank entrenched bad guys. Duroc is more than capable of dumping smoke and ripping fools to pieces in CC or punishing clumped up enemies with double templates. Well recommended but they'll leave a sizeable hole in a deployed force that the trained eye can detect and plan for. ____________________________________________________________- Characters Brigadier Bruant Jaques is a named character Metro officer and brings a Molotok, X-Visor, limited camo and D-charges on all of his profiles. He really boosts the hitting power of a metro link team in Merovingia but the Molotok's changes in N3 mean you'd probably be better off investing in a Tankhunter; "true" camo is much more powerful than limited camo and the weapon selection is much better. The Bruant LT option is interesting if you've got a CoC spec-ops, but not particularly wise if not. Isobel McGregor Our named spec-ops character, this lass comes in a dire-foes pack and is the only native hacker in Ariadna. Even then, she's only a defensive hacker, but she can complete all the hacking-related secondary objectives and carries D-charges for "sabotage" and e/maulers for the deployables game too. Either the assault pistol or T2 rifle profiles sing in a volunteer link team in Caledonia sectoral, but the appearance of the Wardriver in N3 at a significantly reduced price has undercut her and left her a little high and dry, even is she is a much better gunfighter. Roger Van Zant A funny character in N2, his gimmick was basically to deliver an AD strike with reliability into the enemy deployment zone. That has changed in N3, though his tactical jump remains one of the reasons for taking him. High CC, MA L2 and V:Dogged make for a capable combatant and the AP ammo for his rifle helps give him punch against heavier targets. Executive order is interesting, but not something I'm overly keen on, especially as he's likely to be in the thick of the fighting and quite a high-priority target for your opponent. He makes an absolutely superb rambo unit and one that opponents will start to look for once you've used him once or twice. Make sure he comes on early in the turn to get enough orders to accomplish what you need him to do, as he'll surely go down in the next reactive turn. A good idea is to not over-stretch him. Get a couple of kills and then park him somewhere awkward on supp fire and force your opponent to bleed orders on digging him out. Uxia McNeill A superb specimen of a woman, Uxia is pretty bad-ass, being an excellent gunfighter with her own smoke and D-charges and possessing limited camo + superior infiltration. She keeps the excellent SAS base profile too, so is plenty capable in CC if you need it. Her two kit options are both useful, ITS players will appreciate the "specialist troop" profile and where you don't need her for objectives, the MSV1 profile is damn handy for countering enemy skirmishers and recognition of mines. Dual assault pistols and a boarding shotgun mean she can easily dominate short ranged fire-fights and she makes for a truly excellent skirmisher choice. I find keeping her as a reserve choice very handy when i'm going first. rolling for superior infiltration and starting T1 by ploughing orders into a rambo with her. She's a properly aggressive unit and reaps the best rewards for your efforts when fueled with orders and going on the attack. Like roger above, she's dangerous and your opponent will want to stop her before she attacks again in t2. save an order or two on her to get her into a defensive spot and force him to bleed orders on digging her out. William Wallace Most of his utility lays within the Caledonian sectoral force; specifically being able to corral a mishmash of irregulars into a professional, regular fighting force using his "inspiring leadership" trait, or forming links with HI, 45th Rifles or Wulvers. He's straight out of the obvious LT 101 textbook in those roles and he finds himself freed significantly from those shackles here, given that he loses his lieutenant profile in vanilla. He essentially functions like McMurrough here, a 6-4MOV close combat beast who brings a template weapon (lft) and a whole boatload of CC potential. A few interesting quirks set him aside from his nearest competitors, he is for one, a much better shot and the combi rifle he brings is the only one in Ariadna. He's also the only one sporting a cube, so healing him is more reliable, but that doesn't really play nice with his NWI. He brings his own smoke to the party and hits super-hard with his CC22, Beserk skill and EXP CCW. Frenzy might bite him in the ass though, so plan for it. I'm not overly sold on him here, I think the Cameronians, Dog warriors and Wulvers all fill the niche better and bring better vertical mobility to boot. _______________________________________________ REMs We only have the one choice which makes this pretty easy for me to write; the lowly and underloved Traktor Mul. It comes in three flavours, each saddled with poor stats, but it does bring a lot of utility to a vanilla force. Firstly, the best reason to include one is due to baggage. Baggage is a neat rule that really helps keep you out of retreat and contributes +25points on top of usual point costs which is great for ITS scenarios like frontline and supremacy where zones are "dominated" by points totals nearby. Secondly, the Katyusha and Uragan can fire speculative and guided armaments, both realistically requiring support from our suite of forward observers to work. Thirdly, the Uragan is now a total reaction drone, able to fire at full burst in ARO. This makes it a fairly competent DZ defender and can cover potential drop zones or flanking weak-spots whilst contributing guided missiles. For these reasons, they are pretty recommendable, and hell, even the 5pt minesweeper bot can now reload your mines and panzerfausts!