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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

On Farseers and Psychic Powers: BYB Powers (2 of 2)

For completeness' sake here is the second half of my post on Farseers and psychic powers. There are many reason to swap out and at the moment only one, maybe two, not to. I realize that much is going to change soon, including who can cast and how many powers they throw out, but at the very least the BYB power profiles will not. Oh, and here is a link to part one.,

On BYB Powers
I like both the Divination and Telepathy disciplines. I don't roll when I have no use for at least the Primaris powers and that may affect my attitude toward the tables, but I also often roll powers that are very beneficial. I don't think any are terrible, but there are a few that I swap for the Primaris without much thought. Let me begin by looking at the tables power-by-power.

Primaris - Prescience: Now that Guide can't be cast from vehicles this is our replacement. I love the upgraded range from Guide, but obviously rerolling misses in combat is the real cake-taker here. My goal in using powers that grant rerolls is to reroll whatever bottlenecks my efficiency the most. Hits in combat is huge for something like a Seer Council that always wounds on 2s and doesn't need Doom. Best case for the Council is Prescience and Misfortune. This gives them the edge they need to not bounce off of units or get tarpitted by Fearless stuff. Obviously excellent for any shooting-heavy list as well. I plan around taking this with at least one power every time I roll the BYB powers.

1) Foreboding: I like how this power looks but have personally never rolled it up. I often run my Farseers behind an ADL with Guardians though. Obviously they're pitiful in CC and this power would go a long way combined with Prescience to relieve my need for a counter-assault unit. Still, somewhat situational. I'd look at my opponent's CC capabilities, maneuverability and where I plan to have my Farseer in order to make the decision whether or not to keep this one if I don't have the Primaris yet.

2) Forewarning: As another poster has already mentioned, this is a fantastic power. However I've dropped it for the Primaris in games where I knew my Farseer would be behind an ADL supporting units that already have 4+ cover. The best use I've gotten from it is casting it from a Jetbike onto Scatter Walkers. Since our skimmers now get jink saves War Walkers seem much more frail in comparison. I find this helps give them an edge they need. Other great candidates include Wraithlords, Wraithguard, Warp Spiders--really, anything valuable that is going to get hit with low AP fire. Keep in mind what you're trying to do with your Seer generally, but I'd personally probably keep this. Even for units with a 4+ cover already it may be good if your opponent is looking to slam you with a Whirlwind, etc.

3) Misfortune: Personally my favorite book power. Like the others it is situational too, but if you fight with enough cover or against enough MEQ/TEQ this can change the whole game. Against anything with a decent save this can really skew the odds in your favor. And as an added bonus it pisses your opponent off. I've seen an opponent make bad decisions directly after failing saves due to this =) Good stuff. Like Doom, everything in your army benefits from it. Just put it on something and throw dice at that unit. My personal favorites with this are Scatter Lasers from any source, Warp Spiders and Harlequins, oh and Dire Avengers too. Combines great with Prescience, Guide and Doom if you can get them in too.

4) Perfect Timing: Another of my personal favorites. I expect many to disagree with me since a lot of our best shooting comes from vehicles, but if you happen to field Dark Reapers then god help your MEQ enemies. Other solid combos are Guardians with Bright Lances/Prescience. Not usually so amazing and overpriced IMO, but when you ignore cover it becomes very effective. Another is Rangers as ignoring cover negates one of 2 main problems with them IMO (the other being a need for Doom). Good with Shadow Spectres too if you cast from a Jetbike.

5) Precognition: I have never kept this. Farseers are hideously bad in combat. If anyone has come up with any use for this power I'd love to hear about it. Seems like a power for GK Librarians or the like.

6) Scrier's Gaze: I love this power. I doubt I'd keep it if I have an Autarch on the table too, but maybe even then I would for the Outflank rerolls. Depends on my list. Again this is something that you'd have to decide based on your list, your Outflank options, your opponent and how you expect him to deploy.

Primaris - Psychic Shriek: I don't know if I can convey how obscenely powerful I consider this power to be. Obviously the range is prohibitive, but on a Jetbike a Seer can splatter units with this. I've killed whole units with this before I even rolled the rest of my unit's shooting. I like to have just one offensive power if possible. If I don't land something that incapacitates a unit like Hallucination does I'm never disappointed to fall back on this.

1) Dominate: I like this but it does suffer from the abundance of Fearlessness in the game. Still, I've used it to slow down assault units that need to move and run in order to get in range.

2) Mental Fortitude: There are times when you just don't need this. Marching with an Avatar, or with an Embolden Warlock are a few I can think of. Or if you have a Pheonix Lord with you providing Fearless to the unit. Still, might be good if you're rolling with say, Warp Spiders/Jetbikes who run away fast. Or with Guardians in the back lines when you don't have Embolden.

3) Puppet Master: Depends on the opponent's list more than your own. Does he have a single guy in units that you will reach that you can take advantage of? Would be pretty hilarious to steal someone's melta gun to blow up the Land Raider they just got out of. Crazy situational, but I'd give this a good think because it could be way too funny if it works well. Remember though, it doesn't work on vehicles.

4) Terrify: Pretty neat. Never used it, but I'd consider it if I intend to assault. Especially against Fearless armies. Players who use Fearless stuff a lot get real used to it. Might be good just for getting under their skin or for taking advantage of positions where they are counting on Fearlessness. Just as a thought, perhaps you could use this to perform Sweeping Advances on Fearless units. That would be vile =D Can anyone confirm?

5) Invisibility: Incredible power. It suits anything that will get shot or assault a unit. Combines great with Prescience and Fortune. Good targets include Wraith units, any of our CC units and any vehicle (especially skimmers). A lot has been said about this power so I'll leave it at that. Would love to hear if anyone else has some other good combos in mind or has gotten great use from it.

6) Hallucination: There are times when I don't take this because I already have Invisibility and know for sure I want to cast it every turn. But this really is a good power and can shut down units or cause serious damage. "Ermmm?" is actually my favorite result on the chart because it guarantees the unit can't go far or hurt you. The main problems I have with this one are its unreliability, Fearlessness making results 1-2 ineffective and the warp charge cost. If you score enough other powers that you know you won't use it, just take the Primaris. Otherwise it might be nice to have on hand if a target of opportunity presents itself.

I expect some of the things I've said here have circulated the net since the release of 6th. What I'm writing it for is to provide some thinking behind what to keep or aim for. Many of the powers are situational and will not best suit your list. Others won't suit your opponent. Or the terrain. Or the deployment. Or the role your Farseer will be playing. Or his movement capabilities. There are a lot of factors to consider. Ideally, I suggest getting something offensive and a defensive power, either Invisibility or Forewarning. If you don't roll the best powers then weigh the value of you get based on its ability to stall the opponent or stack your odds. As one poster mentioned this is all about a support role, and the kind of support you need will be determined by what you've brought.

My lists tend toward weight of fire from fragile units so I prefer anything defensive and anything that improves shooting damage for as many units as possible. Misfortune, Forewarning, Perfect Timing, Psychic Shriek, Prescience and Invisibility are among my favorites.