Friday, 29 January 2016

Unit Review #3 - Gigas

Giga

Giga are up and this is certainly an interesting unit to look at. Giga can be found only in the Trident Realms and have an interesting few quirks that we will discuss. 



Profile

Speed of 4 puts this in the slow category. Without luck on your side or careful planning these guys will be taking charges. This is also one of the units main weaknesses. 

Melee of 3+ is great for this unit. With so few attacks they need every hit they can get. 

Defense 4+ is average. However the ability "Big Shield" negates this (in the front arc) so I would say that this is more than negated. 

Attacks are poor. Such a low number of attacks and slow speed means it is really hampered in it's offensive output. In fact this is a huge let down. 

Nerve again is low. Hopefully that big shield prevents a lot of damage but in reality it won't take much to get these Gigas to breaking point. 

Points cost is about average for a unit of it's size but you get 1/3 of your attacks and movement removed compared to most Large Infantry. While there are some things you gain of course, I think you lose out more. 

Lastly lets look at it's height of 1. This works both ways usually but being the same height as infantry reduces it's effectiveness of the big shield, preventing using them to soak up arrows. However this also means you can more easily keep them safe from enemy shooting. With a low nerve you don't want to take damage before you close in with the enemy. Overall I would say this is a good thing. 

Overall it's pretty sub par. At a glance the Giga look pretty awesome but they are held back by 3 key disadvantages and that is speed, Attacks and Nerve. As usual with Trident realms it often (not always) pays to check out their abilities before we rule them out as below average. 

Abilities 

Big Shield is this units biggest help. Big shield HELPS (doesn't solve) but helps it's low speed and nerve. Depending on what the enemy throws at them this could keep them alive long enough to do some counter charging. But it relies on being attacked frontally so ensure this unit never gets flanked because it will die to most things in that case. 

Crushing Strength 3 means all but the literal toughest units on the game are wounded on 2's. When you are hitting on 3's this is great but with a low volume of attacks you have to pick your target wisely. I think crushing 3 gives this unit an edge but it does not solve it's set backs. I mean, this is good, but it would be nice to have the attacks to back this up. 

Not much to discuss in the abilities area. This unit (like many units in Trident Realms funnily enough) lacks ensnare which would have made this unit a hassle to charge. Anyway lets really talk about this unit as a whole. Because with this unit you need to look at it as a whole. 

Tactics

At first glance this unit may be better seen as an anchor style unit. Much like the Tree Herder it has a small number of painful attacks. Unlike the Tree Herder however this unit has low nerve and low speed meaning it won't likely get to where you need it very fast and it hold as long as a unit with good nerve value. It clearly is not a good attacker since they lack the speed and number of attacks to really hit a unit hard and their speed means they will likely counter charge so their nerve could prevent this. 

Ultimately their use becomes a little vague. It's easy to simply dump units into a category like anvil or attacker or harasser etc but with a unit like this I would have to say this is one of those back fielding units. Not always but I will get to that soon. In Pillage when you end up with a counter in your zone simply sitting a unit of these on it will make it tricky for them to take. A regiment of these are pretty cheap and with a defense of 6 could sometimes hold their own against units who are likely to rush out of the way objectives like that. In missions like invade or loot these could lag behind the main line of your troops and get anything that break through (or threatens to break through). 

These Giga do the job nobody else really wants to do and that is baby sit low key objectives and watch their comrades die from a distance in reserve... But when their time comes hopefully it is against chaff or units already damaged from a fight. 

The other way to run these could be to get some Placoderms and make a slow wall of defense 6 unshifting crabby death. Gigas on the sides hoping to flank the enemy who dare charge in while Placoderms hold the center line. Add in some inspiring and all of a sudden the speed issue isn't so bad (since your main line is all slow), the nerve is fixed without special baby sitting and the low attacks are supplemented by a wave of Placoderm attacks. An expensive but potentially powerful wall of troops like this could do very well when supports buy units such as the swift River Guard or Wyrm Riders. 

Verdict

The Giga have a lot of flaws and some great abilities but in order to make the best of them they need to be safe from the enemy as often as possible. Do not ever get these expecting them to hold a line on their own or to crush through enemy units with ease. But expect them to support a line of Placoderms or ensure pesky flyers have a harder time trying behind your faster battle line. 

So in my opinion this puts them at a below average choice of unit most of the time. Maybe this is a bit harsh as I really wanted to like these at first but their flaws hold back a unit like this a bit too much. 

Don't expect much from them and they may sometimes surprise you.

Unless you are strapped for points, go for the Water Elementals. They are almost as fast as Giga (at walking pace no less) but hit a little harder and have a much larger threat range. Add in some bane chant and in most cases you will hit much harder much faster with the Elementals... with Regeneration and the possibility of surging too.  

Before we end the Giga Review please do not mistake below average for bad. After many games of KOW it is clear that units themselves are rarely bad (well unless you have seen the stats for rat slaves... haha) but sometimes units have a niche role or don't quite live up to expectations. Im sure any commander will learn how to make the best of a unit that may not be as great as another and this is simply the nature of a game like this. For example while I recommend the Water Elementals over the Giga the Water Elementals still have plenty of flaws the Gigas do not have. 

In short nothing in this is simply outright bad. 



Next up...

Herja Of The Fallen - Varangur 

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