Friday, February 3, 2012
Kirai & Crew Tactica
I think its possible I did one of these before, but I have learned a lot more about our Weeping Spirit Gal since then. So I'm gonna go back over her.
I'll start by saying that what I have learned about Kirai is that there is no "Right Way" to play her. She is mega versatile and can be competitive in any format with just about any build. Also this post is slightly dedicated to Dark Templar His post about Kirai crew he is building got me thinking I should do a write up on her, so thanks!
Kirai - The Lady Herself is not a melee hitter, spell blaster, or gun shooter. Actually when it comes down to it she can't kill enemy models by herself. What she does bring to the table is a well of support options and an uncanny ability to win out in activations. Her Support ranges fairly wide, she can summon new models, heal her crew, de-buff enemy models, and swap her guys around to get maximum efficiency from them. She is the backbone of the whole crew, so keeping her safe is imperative. Luckily she comes with some of the games best built in defenses. And these defenses happen to be the thing that help her win out in activation order.
Seishin - These are her spirit body guards. She can shift attacks over to them instead of taking them herself. She can have up to 5 of them so they can activate away while your opponent uses his real models up, until you are ready to go after them with your heavy hitters. They also have a rule that lets them snap back to Kirai, so using her model swap with one of them is great since they will just fly right back to her. They have 2 decent abilities other then body-guard Kirai. Empower Spirits is a (2) action that gives +2 cb to a spirit within 2' Their other action is to sacrifice them self to make another spirit get a heal flip, so if your desperate for a heal, you have that option.
Lost Love - Her poor departed Fiance. This guy provides another layer of Defence and yet another cheap model to activate. (So your opponent will have to activate 6 guys before you use a single relevant model if you want) The big thing he does for you is save Kirai's life. If she is about to die, he dies instead and she comes back to life as a spirit at half wounds. Combine that with the Seishin and a lot of people just don't find it worth-while to even bother trying to kill her. He also has a spell to heal spirits.
Ikiryo - Kirai's vengful soul. One of Kirai's most powerful spells is Summon Ikiryo. It requires a low crow to cast and creates one of the games better melee hitters. Kirai takes a large number of wounds to do this so it can be risky, but she heals very well and Ikiryo is a primary melee hitter in Kirai's army. I often go through games where I summon 5-7 Ikiryos. She is amazing and should always be on the table. She can attack Def or Wp and ignores armor. Her cb 6 is above average and her damage 2/3/5 is nice. She has a trigger that gives her ++ flip on damage making it pretty easy to do those 5 damage swings. Also she has Melee Expert and can use her (0) to move all Spirits within 18' towards her if you want to move your crew up a bit its a nice little ability to have.
Datsue-Ba - She is a Unique spirit that Kirai can not summon. I would say of all the spirits in the game, only her and the Seishin are auto-includes for Kirai. Datsue is just a tool box of amazing. She can kill in melee, similar attack to Ikiryo. Has a decent control spells, a spirit heal spell, and a fantastic Damage spell. Its the damage spell that makes her so amazing. Any model killed by Weigh Sins becomes a Gaki. If you cast it with a Trigger they become and Onryo instead. She will almost always fill her points, but you have to be careful with her. Have Kirai yank her out of combat if shes hurt, use your heals on her, then let her get back to full HP before sending her back into the fight.
Shikome - Holy Damn this is an amazing model. Shikome is the other heavy hitter Kirai can get access too. Her max damage is not as good as Ikiryo but she makes up for that by being plain amazing. Shikome are hunters and as such they have to pick a specific model to hunt. They can only attack their prey, but when they do they get extra actions and + flips on hit and damage. They can also use the same trigger Ikiryo has where they can get ++ to damage flips. They can poison enemies, choose to hit Def or Wp, and they ignore armor. This is a top tier hitter and is easily worth the 8 stones she costs. You should either bring one to the fight or be ready to summon one turns 1 or 2. Also doing both isn't a bad option
Onryo - This is the slightly better basic unit for Kirai. She can summon them, as can Datsue-Ba. They, much like a lot of spirits can attack wp or def and ignore armor. Their damage is lower then the others, but they are cheaper and designed to support your more deadly spirits. They aren't my favorites, but they can remove WP immunities which will help the rest of the crew function. I dont buy them, but if I need them I am always ready to summon them.
Gaki - These guys hold a special place in my heart. They are deceptively deadly for a 4 stone model, and they are easy as heck to summon. They work great in a bunch, and can again help you win activations. Also they are significant and create a large number of useful bodies for you to work with. That said I love taking 1-2 and summoning another 2-3 so I have 4 of them running around. They can terrorize people with their Devour spell, and when near Kirai they are min damage 3, and Seishin can boost them to CB 6. That's a heck of a hitter for only 4 stones!
The Hanged - He is a great model on paper. And there are games where he will own the table ripping all your opponents best models to half HP. Then there are games where he just doesn't flow right and gets killed. For 8 stones I need more consistency and for damn sure more Kill power. Hanged can't finish and that is their big weakness. They are great set up men, but in Kirai's crew you need to really put opponents down for good when you go after them. I can see the argument for taking them, but they almost never make it into my lists.
The Drowned - These guys have only recently made it into Kirai lists. But I am already a fan. Their biggest draw back is that they are slow. But no one is slow in a Kirai crew if she doesn't want them to be. They have a great ability to force your opponent to take multiple checks at once and either take a lot of little damages or cheat a bunch of cards. Either way works for me. They are cheap as heck too at only 4 points. I need more practice with them, but I think they can be super stars for the lady.
Night Terrors - Kirai can get any objective she wants pretty much at will. Night Terrors take that to the tenth power. I can see taking 2 of them just for their speed. I run a night terror up full speed then swap in (Insert Melee Spirit's name here) and go to town. Also their ability to snag objectives with out taking up Kirai's actions is sweet. And Hard to Kill is always nice.
Jakunna Ubumwe - God I can't wait for her to release. For 5 points she is a unique spirit with amazing control abilities. Also Kirai can re-summon her. Im not 100% sure what she does as its been a while since I read her entry. But I do know she has movement denial tricks and a way to paralyze enemies!
Insideous Madness - The first non-resser spirit we are previewing is pretty close to Datsue-Ba as a must take. Insideoue are fast and they have the ability to make people flip their WP checks at a -flip. Since so much of this crew can target WP with their Melee attacks, this guy basically makes your attacks just hit. Its fantastic! For only 4 points he is well worth the amount of your soul you have to part with to use a purple bordered model.
Jack Daw - Ok so understand right now that I think Jack Daw is cool and good but no where near worth his points. Jack Daw can make or break a game, but I ALWAYS prefer to have a large quantity of models with Kirai over a small pool of quality minions. With her versatility you are losing out on a lot of her power by taking a model as expensive as Jack. Especially since he, like the Hanged suffer from an inability to finish. Jack Daw will basically never kill an enemy model when it counts. And you need hitters to back up Kirai. His no cheat bubble is emulated by the Insideous, but thats only 4 points. So in the end I personally will just about never field him with Kirai. Now, there are those who swear by him, and say he is more of an auto-include that any other spirit, so he can't be all bad. Just know that now you can tell the difference between competent Kirai players... and those who use Jack Daw.
Canine Remains/Desperate Mercenary - Kirai has a rule that says anything thats not a spirit becomes rare 1. So she can't take 2 dogs or 2 Desperate Mercs. She has to take 1 of each. There is a very good reason for why she does this. Enter Datsue-Ba. Anytime a living, Spirit or Undead Model is killed within 8' of Kirai she gets a Seishin. So you set up your poor dog and Merc near her. Then have a Gaki or something smack them in melee to wound them down to 1 hp. Then Datsue-Ba steps up and use Weigh Sins on them. This makes a Gaki(or Onryo if she triggers) and a Seishin out of each of them for 6-10 free stones worth of models. And unlike other "Grow" Builds Kirai can swap models as needed so you dont really lose any speed doing this.