Fiona the Black
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| Fiona the Black |
An unabashed Thamarite, Fiona the Black brazenly displays her devotion to that widely loathed goddess and takes pride in having liberated herself from quaint, conventional notions of morality. She has found a home among the pirates and privateers of the Broken Coast, where skill and ambition bring ample rewards—and folly and stupidity invite destruction.
- 1 Basic Info
- 2 Thoughts on Fiona
- 3 List Building Advice
- 4 Other
- Warcaster - All warcasters come with a stack of standard special rules - most notably being awesome. (Click the link for a full rundown.)
- Cultists - (1) Choose one friendly living non-Morrowan Faction unit at the beginning of the game to be Cultists. Cultists are Thamarite models. (2) Fiona can upkeep one spell without spending focus if there is one or more Cultist models in formation in her control range during the Control Phase. (3) Cultist models do not suffer damage when spells are channeled through them as a result of Dark Rituals.
- Dark Rituals - This model can channel spells through friendly Faction warrior models in its control range. Immediately after a spell is channeled through a model as a result of Dark Rituals, the model it was channeled through suffers d3 points of magical damage.
- Whiplash - If an enemy misses this model with a spell, the attacking model is auto-hit by their own spell.
- Viper - 2" reach, POW 6, P+S 11 melee weapon.
|On a hit, you can immediately advance target enemy non-warcaster, non-warlock, or non-infernal master model up to 3". Affected models cannot be targeted by free strikes during this movement. A model can move only once per turn as a result of Befuddle.|
|Enemy upkeep spells and animi on target model/unit damaged by this attack expire.|
| Curse of Veils
|Target model/unit suffers -2 ARM and does not block LoS.|
|Target friendly Faction model/unit gains Stealth. Models are not affected while out of formation.|
| Roth's Mercy
|When an enemy attack disables a living model in the target friendly Faction unit, you can choose a non-disabled living model in the same unit to be destroyed. If you do so, the disabled model removes 1 damage.|
|When a living non-soulless model is boxed by Soulfire, the spellcaster gains 1 focus point and the boxed model is RFP'd. If the spellcaster does not have the Focus Manipulation special rule it cannot gain a focus point as a result of Soulfire.|
Feat : Dark Omen
Enemy models roll one less die when making attack and damage rolls while in Fiona's control range. Lasts for one round.
- Part of the new Flame in the Darkness theme force.
Thoughts on Fiona
Fiona in a nutshell
Fiona is an offensive spell slinger who has more options than focus. With two or three upkeeps, Soulfire, Chasten, and Curse of Veils as offensive options, she will need to prioritize. Her ability to arc node through any warrior model makes her very hard to defend against.
Befuddle from anywhere and her very powerful feat make her a force to be reckoned with and hands down the most adaptable mercenary caster. She would be included in any discussion of the best casters in the game.
Her feat is a solid defensive effect, but is weaker against gunlines who can stay out of her bubble and shoot in. Generally speaking, her feat gives her a massive advantage against melee armies.
In the current environment there are many models that can reach MAT 10 or higher, and since Fiona has no DEF buff, her feat does not keep infantry as safe as it once did.
Fiona has a flexible toolbox she can use to reach anywhere thanks to Dark Rituals allowing her to channel from any angle. She's an offensive spellslinger who can cast through any of her warrior models and do a whole lot of things to disrupt the enemy.
- Befuddle - Endlessly useful. This is her most dangerous spell. Turn around high DEF models, move something into charge range, walk a slam target in front of the other caster, turn shield models around...
- Chasten - Upkeep removal is often a huge deal. It's also her cheap nuke.
- Curse of Veils - An ARM debuff is always incredibly useful, and occasionally you'll use the secondary effect. Unlike the two Calamity casters in faction, Fiona has no problems getting this spell out.
- Roth's Mercy - This is used to protect important unit leaders like the Idrian Skirmishers's chieftain or guide or the Press Gangers's lass, but it can also be used for board control when your opponent needs to clear a lane or zone. It's more powerful than it sounds. It can stop effects like Berserk, Killing Spree and probably at least a dozen other nasty effects that trigger on Destroyed. Just watch out for effects that prevent damage removal as those prevent the spell from working.
- Occultation - Give stealth to something you want to protect. Just useful, especially as incoming fire has right of way.
- Soulfire - With a 3" AOE, the Soulfire can potentially be cast for "free" infinite times ... if you can kill 3 troops each time. So first you need targets to be bunched up, then you need to kill them with POW 7 blast damage which is anything but guaranteed. Combined with Sylys' Arcane Secrets, you can generally get your focus back if this is your first spell of the turn - watch out for Tough models, though.
Drawbacks & Downsides
- She's squishy.
- Any effect that prevents offensive spellcasting can wreck her if applied to the right targets. Choir of Menoth Shielding, Arcane Ward, etc...
- Her feat can be countered by shooting from outside her control area.
- She does not keep her army alive outside her feat turn. Some armies are quite capable of plowing right through her feat and doing work anyway.
Tricks & Tips
- Using Dark Rituals to channel through a multi-wound model will not kill it.
- Befuddle can give everyone else back arc bonuses for an effective RAT buff.
- Some people play cultists defensively for the free upkeeps all game long - others play them aggressively for the free channeling.
- Befuddle a model to stand in the perfect spot to catch multiple models with Soulfire.
- RFP key solos or UAs with Soulfire. A boostable S+P POW 13 can take out most solos in the game.
- Unlike every other similar rule in the game, Befuddle does not Take Control of the enemy model. That means the advance is "an enemy model advancing and ending its movement", so you can move it into range of and trigger Countercharge on Toros, which she almost always brings.
- Alexia1 can collect the corpses of friendly models who die from Dark Rituals, which she can then convert into fresh arc nodes placed in the perfect positions at the start of the next turn. Additionally, if the original model killed is a Steelhead then Sgt. Nick can bring it back.
List Building Advice
Fiona is a toolbox spellcaster who does a lot of weird stuff that disrupts the enemy and causes them to tear their hair out.
Fiona has some infantry support with Roth's Mercy and Occultation, and some ranged support with Curse of Veils and Befuddle. High DEF units and high ARM warjacks benefit most from her feat. She also want to have speedy and expendible flanking models around for channeling through via Dark Rituals so she can get good angles for her offensive spells.
Fiona is a pirate, and unlike the other three pirate casters, she brings an ARM debuff, which Talion desperately craves. With Rockbottom to handle the hit-fixing and Powder Monkeys to run her jacks, there's good stuff here.
- Powder Monkey - effectively a theme benefit, the Anciliary Attack it can grant to a Mariner (or even a Galleon) is excellent, especially with a caster that can hand out ARM debuffs and back strikes.
- Scharde Dirge Seers - if Fiona takes two Mariners and The Commodore Cannon & Crew one unit can give them all eyeless sight for five effective shooting attacks regardless of things like cloud walls and stealth.
- Scharde Pirates - RAT 7 POW 14 sprays when backed by Lord Rockbottom, this unit can put out a whole lot of devastating shooting and melee. POW 16 under Curse. They also do their own threat extension, which she does not do.
- Sea Dog Pirates with Mr. Walls also bring threat extension, and are a solid choice in the theme.
- The Swabber and Swashbuckler warjacks are quite resilient on her feat turn.
- Press Gangers make outstanding Cultists that can replenish their numbers.
- Swamp Gobber River Raiders probably find their best use with Fiona. Not only are they one-shot channelers with interesting debuffs, when they reel themselves in they can place themselves into the target's back arc so they aren't actually engaged by whoever they hit.
The following models can be taken in Talion but elsewhere, too:
- The Commodore Cannon & Crew is an excellent choice if you don't want to risk her cultists - but may not be fast enough to reach play until turn 3 if you go first.
- Lady Aiyana & Master Holt can stack their ARM debuff on her ARM debuff to burn something to the ground.
- First Mate Hawk can get interesting places with Sprint and Acrobatics and as such provides interesting channel vectors. Object of Desire plus Fiona's Arm Debuff also lets Privateers seriously threaten multi-wound infantry.
- Master Gunner Dougal MacNaile cancels stealth - and helps Privateer shooters.
- Bosun Grogspar cancels pop and drop assassinations.
Fiona is extremely strong in this theme. With Curse of Veils, Throne, Ragman, Alexia3 and Hermit, she can achieve a -10 ARM swing! Though this is severe overkill. Nevertheless, Flame offers many units and solos that will hold up rather well under her feat.
- The Thamarite Archon makes up for the loss of Sylys, allowing her to re-roll her attacks. He's also a self-contained ranged powerhouse and he is nigh invulnerable under her feat so you can run him to contest.
- Ragman, Throne and Alexia3 are all worthy of consideration for the damage boosts.
- Savio Montero Acosta is an expensive requisition choice who benefits from the Thamarite Archon and all the damage boosts.
- The Devil's Shadow Mutineers are a solid Cultist option, but she can always channel through Vigilants or Archons (or even Precursors) if need be.
- Jakes1 can bring high DEF jack, which under Sidekick, will be very hard to deal with under Fiona's feat. The Swashbuckler, in particular gets to DEF 17 in melee with dodge while under Sidekick.
- Order of Illumination Resolutes are good for arcing spells, taking charges on her feat and being useful in general.
- The Legion of Lost Souls are heavy hitters with good range and are blast-resistant on her feat turn.
- The Morrowan Archon adds that extra kick of DEF to make your army extra unhittable in melee, even by MAT 9 on her feat.
- The Hermit of Henge Hold grants an ARM debuff or an accuracy boost, enhancing her effectiveness greatly.
- Alexia2's Thralls hit quite hard on a Cursed target. And she herself is tough to remove when she has stealth. Most importantly however, Alexia can move up spawn a Thrall or three, repo back, and then Fiona can channel through the Thrall, meaning the enemy caster has to constantly worry about her assassination threat.
The Irregulars allows the widest possible range of models, including powerful 10 man ranged units to make use of Curse of Veilss, Eliminators as mobile arc nodes and most importantly Nemo4, but sadly no Archons. She's very viable here as well.
- Nemo4 is a powerful ranged platform to begin with, totting boostable POW 14 guns with potential for Signs and Portens to really make use of Curse. He can summon a Steelhead Ironhead as a means of threat extension, and recurrs infantry, which synergises with Alexia2. But most importantly he can bring a Toro and move it with Watcher and Locomotion.
- The combo goes like this: Use Locomotion and Crane from the Ironhead for a free 5" move on your Toro. Befuddle something within 6" of Nemo and have the Toro advance 5", befuddle something else into 6" of the Toro and counter charge for 8". Your Toro just moved 17" before it even activated and potentially even laid out a fully boosted P+S 20 Watcher attack and a P+S 20 Counter Charge.
- Alexia2, mentioned above can also be here in this theme. She collects souls from your infantry, which Nemo then recurrs.
- One or two units with powerful guns and good DEF are recommended to really make use of Curse and her feat.
- Croe's Cutthroats - Take them for Backstab, as Fiona can turn targets around with Befuddle.
- Idrian Skirmishers are an amazing combined arms unit - thanks to their CA - so they love Roth's Mercy. Their ability to Reposition often lets you place one model in an ideal position to arc from once the unit's activation is over.
- Nyss Hunters - They are also Weapon MAsters in melee. They take very kindly to Occultation giving them a defensive ability or Roth's Mercy in order to keep Celyna safe.
- Kayazy Eliminators are great to channel through as they have acrobatics and multiple hit points - and can survive.
- Lynus Wesselbaum & Edrea Lloryrr really amplify shooting as they remove pesky clouds and Applied Knowledge makes youable to pick columns. Finally, Lynus can heal models damaged by Dark Rituals.
- Lady Aiyana & Master Holt - Usually a mainstay in Irregular lists, but with Fiona's spellcasting and ARM debuff you might find you don't need their services.
- Asphyxious4 brings another form of threat extention in Leadership: Bloodthirst. As a super "solos" he also really loves her feat to stay alive and can put into place servitors as throwaway arc-nodes.
Most of the non-archon solos in Flames are also available in this theme, as well as a myriad of other solos and lesser warlocks.
- Gastone Crosse - Gastone is already a deadly super-solo with high damage output. Fiona cranks this up to eleven by turning targets around with Befuddle, exposing their backs for him to stab them with... bullets?
- Giving him a Swashbuckler can prove worthwhile as with naturally good DEF and Duelist it can function a a cheap and difficult to get rid of engagement or contesting piece on feat turn.
- Harlowe Holdemhigh - Probably the best shooting solo in the faction. Curse and feat really help him do his thing, though he functions perfectly well without support, too.
- Boomhowler, Solo Artist - Giving a key ranged solo or unit Reposition allows them to be a bit more aggressive.
- Sylys Wyshnalyrr, The Seeker - Another free upkeep if you brought cultists, extra dice on magic attack and damage rolls and extra range on spells (albeit only on non-channeled ones). Combos very will with the Hermit for Telemetry.
- Lanyssa Ryssyl has a speed buff (which Fiona lacks) which also lets her jack charge for free, which saves her focus, but you rely on Lanyssa hitting and damaging the target. Upgrading her into a Diffuser on Nemo4 for 2 points might prove more worthwhile.
- Gorman2 - His Weaken spray can stack well with her feat, meaning living enemies will struggle to put a dent into anything in your army.
- Wrong Eye & Snapjaw are useful as Star Crossed and her feat combine well and Snapjaw is a heavy she does not have to fuel.
- Dahlia Hallyr & Skarath love her feat and free up her focus. The danger noodle (Skarath) also has a neat gun.
Fiona runs this theme quite well. SOF lacks an ARM debuff outside Gorman, so Curse of Veils is helpful and makes the Cavalry extremely powerful. Likely she will cast Occultation on the Cavalry, bring Verendrye and Alexia2 plus a couple units of Halberdiers and Rhupert plus whatever else and let the army do its thing while she does hers.
- The Steelhead Ironhead increases the Befuddle/Countercharge threat of the Toro an extra 2".
She's not a battlegroup caster, having no innate boosts to jacks or jack spells. She wants to sling spells. So don't bring too many. 2-3 is a fine amount
- Mariner - two Mariners fit almost perfectly into Fiona's jack points. They are good all-round shooty jacks with long ranges, large AOEs, and in the Talion theme they can get a second shot thanks to the Powder Monkey. It is possible to blow heavy targets away by befuddling them, dropping Curse and Kiss on them and shooting them with 3 Mariners plus ancillaries.
- The Toro has phenomenal synergy with has as you can trigger Counter Charge manually by befuddling any enemy into it. It also has just the right defensive stats to get the most out of her feat and brings a P+S 18 whackstick to boot.
- Fiona runs a mean Blockader - turning the sprays up to 11 on the advance, protecting it on her feat turn and after that - rocket fists.
- Sculptor: Werner Klocke
- Fiona is Warmachine's first Thamarite, and was the first mercenary caster with a FOCUS stat over 6.
- As a Thamarite, she will use any means necessary to achieve victory. (Thamar's central tenet is that everyone can improve themselves, and should do so by whatever means they deem necessary - as opposed to Morrow's, that everyone can improve themselves and should do this and help everyone else do so)
- Released in Pirates of the Broken Coast (2007)
Warjacks she can take
With the way Mercenary battlegroups work, this model can't simply control any Mercenary warjack, and instead is limited to the following choices:
|Mercenary Warjacks (Human) (Edit)|
|Light||Buccaneer - Renegade (Magnus only) - Scallywag - Swashbuckler - Talon - Vanguard|
|Heavy||Freebooter - Gallant - Mangler - Mariner - Mule - Nomad - Rocinante - Rover - Toro - Swabber|
|Colossal||Blockader - Galleon|
- Note: Other restrictions may apply, such as 'Jack Marshals can't control Colossals, character warjacks aren't allowed in most theme forces, etc.
Other Mercenary models
|* The "Damage Type: Magical" is not inherited by "secondary" damage from a weapon. That is, stuff like arcs (Electro Leap) or hazards (Scather). (Infernal Ruling)